Archive for the 'Education' Category

Southern ocean acidification and the Antarctic treaty system

This chapter explores how states party to Antarctic Treaty System instruments have addressed ocean acidification in the Southern Ocean. While there are no obligations explicitly applicable to ocean acidification, states should address the threat as part of their obligations to comprehensively protect Antarctica and its dependent and associated ecosystems, and to apply an ecosystem approach to managing Southern Ocean fisheries. The Chapter provides a critical overview of ATS initiatives to date to develop a strategic policy approach to climate change, noting the significant resistance from states to developing substantive obligations within the ATS in respect of activities taking place outside of the Antarctic Treaty area. It concludes by arguing that Article 2 of the 1991 Environmental Protocol can be interpreted to impose a due diligence obligations on parties to take action to address the causes of ocean acidification in respect of activities outside of the Antarctic Treaty area.

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NOAA live! webinar – it’s not easy being shelled: the ocean acidification blues

February 10 @ 1:00 pm – 2:00 pm

The NOAA Live! Webinars are a collaboration between NOAA’s Regional Collaboration Network and Woods Hole Sea Grant at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution.

Each interactive webinar features a different NOAA expert/topic and a moderated question and answers session throughout so that kids can get a peek at what our NOAA scientists do in all the various NOAA offices.  These webinars are geared toward grades 2-8.  Webinars are streamed via GoToWebinar, are ~45 minutes in length, have live American Sign Language interpretation, and are recorded and put on our WHOI YouTube Channel with English and Spanish subtitles.  #NOAALive4Kids

You can find a description of the webinar and the registration link by visiting

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Chapter: Manipulation of seawater carbonate chemistry

Different culture methods to grow microalgae could lead to different physical (light) and chemical environments in culture vessels. Photosynthetic carbon sequestration by the algae in light and their respiratory CO2 release in darkness, can affect stability of carbonate systems (pH, various forms of inorganic carbon, total alkalinity) in culture systems. Usually, pH could increase during light period with active photosynthesis, and decrease during dark period. Such changes in pH and associated carbonate chemistry depend on culture methods and cell biomass or densities of microalgae in water body. The greater the amount of carbon fixation in the water, the greater the changes of the carbonate system. In experiments on the influence of other environmental factors on algae, controlling pH and other carbonate system parameters within known stable ranges is one of the keys to obtain reliable data. This section introduces the seawater carbonate system, compares the existing several kinds of carbonate system control methods, and provides basic suggestions for ocean acidification simulation experiments on marine organisms.

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What can local governments do to address ocean and coastal acidification?

Municipal governments are on the forefront of experiencing the direct impacts of climate and ocean change as they must continually absorb and prepare for adverse impacts to coastal communities.

Increasing ocean acidification (OA), combined with other stressors like ocean warming and loss of oxygen, threatens marine species and ecosystems that are essential for sustaining jobs and supporting the health coastal economies around the world.  Additionallylocal and land-based contributions along with additional stressors, can exacerbate OA and other climate related changing conditions.

Stakeholders and decision-makers at local, regional, and international scales are collaborating to respond to the accelerating global threat of OA and other climate-ocean impacts.

Local municipalities (counties, cities, ports, regional governance bodies) also have a role to play.

Download Our Infographic:  What Can Local Governments Do To Address Ocean and Coastal Acidification (

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Ocean acidification – a card game simulation – climate change

Instructions for Teachers

The pages are set so that, when printed double sided, they have a back and front, enabling for easy sorting. Before you print the whole deck, test your settings by printing the first two pages of cards, to check alignment. If it doesn’t match, then its likely to do with how the printer flips the page (either long end or short end), so make sure it is on the flipped on the long end. If you don’t want backs, then print every second page. There are two sizes of cards, mini and large, so have a look at both before you print.

Contents: 8x Hydrogen Cards, 8x Hydrogen Carbonate Cards, 19x Calcium Cards, 19x

Carbonate Cards, 1x Information Card

This card game works in 4 rounds. This works best in groups of 4, but can work with less or if necessary, up to 5 players per deck. Each player is role playing as a crab.

Round one: The game starts by placing all of the Calcium and Carbonate Ion Cards face down on the table, as well as two hydrogen and two hydrogen carbonate cards. Each person picks up 4 positive ion cards and 4 negative ion cards. The goal is to match. Calcium with Carbonate. If you have 4 pairs, your shell grows. 3 pairs means enough minerals have been gathered to repair their shell. 2 pairs means damage cannot be repaired, but doesn’t worsen and 1 pair means the shell gets further damage and cannot be repaired. Record the scores on a tally card.

Round two-four: At the end of the first round and each round after, all the cards are returned to the table, face down and an additional two hydrogen and two hydrogen carbonate cards are added, symbolising the acidification of the ocean through the dissolving of more CO2. Same rules for shell repair apply.

Person with the most points at the end wins (pairs). Enjoy.


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An investigation into ocean acidification

This directed case study covers fundamental information about ocean acidification using relevant examples from general science news articles as well as data excerpted from scientific research. It was developed for general environmental science classes and beginning science majors in college; however, it could also be used in high school classes. The case is divided into three sections, each with a different focus. Part I introduces the topic of ocean acidification and provides an overview of ocean chemistry and the pH scale. Part II presents carbon dioxide emissions and pH data for students to analyze. The data include historical estimations since the Industrial Revolution as well as recent emission projections from the past few decades. Part III examines the effects of ocean acidification on the shell of a marine snail, the sea butterfly (Limacina helicina). The case concludes with a broader consideration of the potential biological implications for other marine organisms and the environment in general.

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NetLogo – modeling effects of ocean acidification on fish (modeling learning activity)

Before you begin…

  • Ensure you have a strong understanding of systems and models by reading the background information page, if you haven’t yet.
  • You will need a pencil and paper as you work through this activity. You have the option of printing this webpage or recording your findings in a notebook.

Background: Ocean acidification and its impacts

As the issue of ocean acidification came to light, many scientists began to research what the result of more acidic oceans might be. We now know, for example, that lower pH caused by carbon dioxide makes it harder for shelled organisms to build shells, negatively affects the nervous systems of some fish, and can stimulate growth of aquatic plants. It turns out that elevated levels of CO2 also affect small reef fish. In a comprehensive article Munday et al. describe the “dramatic effect” of both elevated carbon dioxide concentrations and rising temperatures on “a wide range of behaviors and sensory responses” in various tropical fishes.

We’re going to use a specific study by Munday et al., “Replenishment of fish populations is threatened by ocean acidification” (PNAS, 2010) to build a model of how ocean acidification could affect clownfish-predator interactions.

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Ocean Acidification – Camp TV (video)

You can help save the planet by walking somewhere or riding your bike because you are not burning fossil fuels in a gas-powered vehicle. Fossil fuel emissions are hurting our planet as part of climate change. Learn through an experiment with Save The Bay in Narragansett, RI how these practices cause ocean acidification, harming our oceans’ plants and animals, and how to help.

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Webinar: understanding ocean acidification: using NOAA’s new educational tools

Date/Time: Thursday, August 13, 2020 5:00 PM to 6:00 PM CDT

Understanding Ocean Acidification: Using NOAA’s New Educational Tools

Rafael DeAmeller, NOAA Environmental Visualization Lab Leader

Data in the Classroom is designed to help teachers and students use real scientific NOAA data to explore dynamic Earth processes and understand the impact of environmental events on a regional and global scale. The interactive module provides authentic research questions and scaled data interactions that give students the opportunity to explore this question (and more). In this presentation, participants will dive deep into Data in the Classroom’s Ocean Acidification Module to explore the processes that cause acidification, examine data from across the globe and take a virtual tour of the new web-based curricular modules and data tools.

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Carbonated water: teaching climate change and ocean acidification

Date And Time
Tue, Aug 11, 2020, 9:00 AM – Thu, Aug 13, 2020, 3:00 PM PDT

Padilla Bay NERR, Ω0441 Bay View-Edison RD, Mount Vernon, Washington 98273 USA

A Professional Development workshop for Middle and High School Teachers
Tuesday, August 11, 9:00-11:30 and 1:00-3:00 and Thursday, August 13, 9:00-11:30 and 1:00-3:00. This is an interactive, online class using Zoom.

Participants in this workshop will:
• Gain knowledge of climate change and ocean acidification in the Pacific Northwest
• Explore sources of local environmental data and work towards incorporating data into inquiry-based science learning experiences;
• Receive materials and activities included in the Ocean Sciences Sequence (OSS) curriculum on Climate Change developed by UC Berkeley Lawrence Hall of Science

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Ocean acidification in the IPCC AR5 WG II

OUP book