Archive for the 'Art' Category



Enviro-doc exploring ocean acidification’s impact on deep-water corals gains unprecedented access; to premiere at Santa Barbara International Film Festival

Acid Horizon follows marine ecologist Dr. Erik Cordes on a harrowing deep-sea expedition to track down the “supercoral,” a strain of the deep-water coral Lophelia pertusa that seems to possess the unique genetic capability to thrive in a low-pH ocean. The film will make its World Premiere at the 2018 Santa Barbara International Film Festival.

The film’s protagonist Dr. Cordes, Associate Professor and Vice Chair of Biology at Temple University, explains: “Our research has shown that some coral colonies – the “Supercorals” – do better than the rest when challenged by ocean acidification. This film delivers that message through an intimate story and an epic adventure. It is essential that this story is told so that people are aware of this hidden threat, but also understand that there is hope and still time to take action.”

Continue reading ‘Enviro-doc exploring ocean acidification’s impact on deep-water corals gains unprecedented access; to premiere at Santa Barbara International Film Festival’

Season’s greetings and happy new year !

Capture

A novel approach to ocean acidification

Pteropods may look otherworldly, but they are a real and threatened species of minuscule marine snail whose appearance in Homer author Nancy Lord’s new novel “pH” makes the book not science fiction, but an example of science in fiction.

“pH” is the first novel for Lord, a mostly literary nonfiction writer whose five previous books have looked at endangered Cook Inlet beluga whales, personal recollections of setnet fishing, and northern experiences of climate change. “pH” gives its first factual data point on page three: “Alaska has more coastline than the rest of the United States put together.” The thought that immediately follows in the mind of “pH”’s hero, marine biologist Ray Berringer, is that it only makes sense for Alaskans to lead the study of ocean acidification and how it affects the food chains on which many coastal lives — and the economic lives of many Alaskans — depend.

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Art and senses in the service of science

By designing experiments directly targeting our values scientists can achieve more effective scientific communication. Recent research at the University of Gothenburg has shown that art and emotions can help scientists play a key role in getting people to take action based on knowledge.

Marine biologist Sam Dupont during the school project “I am the Ocean”.

The increasing destruction and pollution of the ocean subsequently threatens humanity by putting at risk the countless services provided by marine ecosystems. In the face of global changes such as warming and ocean acidification, only collective action can lead to the needed mitigation and adaptation measures.

When it comes to the responsibility of society for causing these changes, the scientific evidence is strong. But it is complicated by competing values, uncertainties and complexity in causation. The scientific community is still struggling to deliver strong messages to citizens and policymakers.

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Nancy Lord’s pH: a novel

Although Nancy Lord has been writing powerfully about our role in the destruction of our natural environment for a long while, this is the first full-length fiction by the famed Alaska naturalist and former Alaska Writer Laureate (2008-10).

Anyone interested in or concerned about climate change knows that in many ways, Alaska is ground zero in the United States. We’ve all seen photos on the web of the rotting permafrost, the starving polar bears, and the disappearing sea ice, but what Lord’s novel does is give compelling life to one of the most devastating and often unseen aspects of climate change: the acidification of the ocean. The title “pH” refers to the focus of the science at the heart of Lord’s novel: the rapid changes in pH in our waters indicating an increase in ocean acidification.

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2017 Annual World Oceans Day Oceanic Photo Competition

Deadline for submissions: 12 May 2017!

Photography is a powerful medium of expression that can be used to communicate strong positive messages about a subject. This open and free photo competition seeks to inspire the creation and dissemination of such positive imagery, which conveys the beauty and importance of the ocean and humankind’s relation to it.

The photo competition has five thematic categories open for photographic submissions:

  • Underwater seascapes
  • Underwater life
  • Above water seascapes
  • Human Interaction: Making a Difference
  • Youth Category: open category, any image of the ocean (above or below the surface) [Youth is defined as under 16 years of age as of 1 April 2017]

The entries must be submitted electronically through the World Oceans Day Photo Competition portal in accordance with the competition guidelines and subject to the competition rules. Winning images will be recognized at the United Nations on Wednesday, 8 June 2017 during the United Nations event marking World Oceans Day 2017.

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Silent Oceans: the effect of ocean acidification on marine sounds – Video Abstract

Research paper: Rossi T., Connell S. D. & Nagelkerken I., 2016. Silent oceans: ocean acidification impoverishes natural soundscapes by altering sound production of the world’s noisiest marine invertebrate. Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences 283(1826). Article (subscription required).

Multimedia production credit: Animate Your Science.

Grad students create interactive EMS Museum exhibit on ocean acidification

Geosciences graduate students worked to create a new exhibit in the EMS Museum & Art Gallery. The exhibit focused on several students’ research and employs numerous hands-on activities to create an interactive exhibit. Museum visitors can see 3D replicas of microscopic sea life that may be affected by increased ocean acidification, can use a magnifying glass to see real specimens up-close, and can learn more about microscopic sea life and ongoing Penn State oceanography research using an iPad display.

Penn State College of Earth and Mineral Sciences Marketing and Communications, 28 February 2017. Video.

BIOACID Exhibition – “OCEAN ACIDIFICATION: The Other Carbon Dioxide Problem”

From the Arctic to the tropics, ocean acidification changes life in the sea. By absorbing manmade carbon dioxide (CO2) from the atmosphere, the ocean slows down global climate change. But in seawater, the greenhouse gas causes a chemical reaction with far-reaching consequences: carbonic acid is formed, and the pH drops. Many plants and animals that build their shells or skeletons of calcium carbonate are at serious risk, because they need more energy to maintain growth in more acidic water. Organisms that convert carbon dioxide into energy by photosynthesis, however, could benefit. In addition, certain species are able to adapt to new conditions in the long run. The roles in the marine food web are redefined, while other factors such as rising temperatures, loss of oxygen, eutrophication, pollution or overfishing additionally might further influence the effects of ocean acidification.

The German research network BIOACID examines the effects of acidification on the life and biogeochemical cycles in the ocean – and on all those who depend on it.

In an exhibition of the BIOACID project, the two nature photographers Solvin Zankl and Nick Cobbing present BIOACID members at their work and introduce organisms that current ocean acidification research focuses on.

Next to each photo, there is a panel with a QR code that can be read by smart phones with a suitable app. The code leads to image descriptions and background information as well as additional videos on this website.

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Crossing the Ecoline: a visual response to increasing levels of ocean acidification

This text is presented in conjunction with my exhibition Crossing the Ecoline and is a visual response to changing levels of ocean acidification. My art making is informed by the processes of dispersal and dissolution that occur at the point where the absorption of carbon dioxide takes place between the atmosphere and the ocean. This project is of an interdisciplinary nature and traverses art and science – both technically and through collaboration. By working in close consultation with marine scientists I hope to draw attention to the little-known issue of ocean acidification through creative means. Through the consideration of materials and processes I aim to bring attention to where billions of microorganisms called phytoplankton live. The project is concerned with the idea of the edge: boundary or border as a conceptual notion, as well as through my art making practice, its interdiscplinarity and subject matter.

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OA-ICC HIGHLIGHTS

Ocean acidification in the IPCC AR5 WG II

OUP book