Factsheet 7 – Our Pacific Ocean, our stories: Learning more about ocean acidification

What is Ocean Acidification?

Our global ocean absorbs approximately 30% of the carbon dioxide (CO2) released into the atmosphere. This CO2 combines with seawater to produce carbonic acid, turning the seawater more acidic and depleting the seawater of carbonate that many forms of sea life need to build their shells. CO2 is an acid gas, so the addition of CO2 to the ocean from burning fossil fuels is making seawater more acidic; we call this process “ocean acidification.”

Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme, June 2019. Factsheet.

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