Traveling kiosk teaches ocean acidification (audio)

oa-kiosk_kodiak_A hands on tool teaches about changing oceans; Coming to a harbor near you.

A teaching tool to help people understand corrosive oceans has been traveling to coastal communities. The Alaska Marine Conservation Council along with Cook Inlet Keeper designed the interactive Ocean Acidification kiosk. Its debut was in Homer last fall, it then made its way to Kodiak in the spring, and it will soon be on the move again. Dorothy Childers, AMCC’s Associate Director Shares the purpose of the kiosk.

“Even though there have been a lot of scientific presentations in our communities, there hasn’t been a regular presence of information for people to learn from. Our goal is to make the science more understandable and more available so people can get involved in addressing the issue.”

Visitors to the kiosk, Childers says, can press different buttons to watch and hear scientific facts about Ocean Acidification from experts in the field and fishermen on the grounds.

“It’s really a tool to learn and get more engaged. There is an opportunity through the kiosk to for people to sign up to receive more information in the future or to be included in meetings in the future so they can take part in the science and what we are going to do about it.”

AMCC’s Hannah Heimbuch explains the importance of placement for the Kiosk.

“We set up the kiosk close to harbors and marinas where it’s not only close to fishermen where we can communicate about this issue more, but also to allow anyone else that visits the area to make that direct connection between the resources we rely on out in the water and these big picture shifts that we are just now starting to understand.”

Heimbuch says that the kiosk will keep pace with the science.

“That is the interesting part about this. That compared to other fields of ocean studies, ocean acidification is very new and very much evolving as a research topic. So there is a lot of great information in the kiosk if people want to look deeply into it, but a big part of the goal is to create some initial awareness and that this is a shift that is occurring in our marine environment and we don’t know how it will affect our fisheries.”

The Kiosk will only be in Kodiak for a few more weeks before it gets moved across the Gulf to Sitka.

“That will be its winter and spring placement and then we will be looking for new placement for spring 2017. So if there is a community or organization that wants to host the kiosk I would love to hear from them.”

Visit AMCC online for more information about the kiosk and find links at our website www. alaskafishradio.com

Stephanie Mangini, Alaska Fish Radio, 19 September 2016. Text and audio.

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