Archive for the 'Education' Category

PhD opportunity: ocean acidification reduction through effective port policies

Location: University of Tasmania, Australia

Closing Date: 11th August 2019

Description: Ocean acidification is a process whereby carbon dioxide (CO2), mainly from the atmosphere, dissolves in seawater and form carbonic acid. This weak acid triggers changes in the seawater chemistry that lead to the decrease of ocean’s pH. It is estimated that oceans absorb about 30% per cent of CO2 produced by humans. As such, CO2 emissions reduction is probably the only sustainable way to minimise this acidification process. However, the present trend of CO2 release to atmosphere does not support this effort. According to the Third IMO Green House Gas Study 2014, the mid‐range forecasted scenarios project a potential increase of CO2 emissions from international shipping between 50% to 250% by year 2050. The magnitude of this increment depends on the aggressiveness of world economic growth as well as energy developments.

In line with the effort of Goal 14 (Life Below Water) of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, target 14.3 to “Minimize and address the impacts of ocean acidification, including through enhanced scientific cooperation at all levels”, the goal of this research is to establish potential port policy that can effectively contribute to the reduction of carbon dioxide emissions from maritime activities within port limits through efficient port operations.

Continue reading ‘PhD opportunity: ocean acidification reduction through effective port policies’

Changing ocean chemistry: a high school curriculum on ocean acidification’s cause, impacts, and solutions

This five-lesson curriculum seeks to increase students’ understanding of ocean acidification (OA) and help them understand that it is an issue they can address. There are five lessons in the unit and a final Call to Action project.

Lesson 1 explores a real-life story about the near collapse of the oyster industry in 2007-2009 along the U.S. west coast. It includes an overview of OA and an exploration of how humans have altered the carbon cycle.

Lesson 2 and 3 focus on the chemistry of OA. Lesson 2 looks at pH and how carbon dioxide “acidifies” the water. In Lesson 3, students learn about changes in the carbonate ion concentration, an essential part of calcifying marine organisms that make shells and hard structures made out of calcium carbonate (e.g., shellfish and corals). Students apply what they learn by interpreting water quality data from Whiskey Creek Shellfish Hatchery.

In Lesson 4, students research the possible impacts of OA on ecosystems and humans. Lesson 5 examines potential solutions to OA. Students brainstorm ways to reduce CO2, emissions, identify barriers to taking action, and explore household actions that have the most significant impact.

Finally, students participate in a Call to Action project where they identify a target audience and try to persuade them to take action.

Continue reading ‘Changing ocean chemistry: a high school curriculum on ocean acidification’s cause, impacts, and solutions’

Ocean acidification climate change lab: teaching tool

Climate change is a hot topic that has been discussed in politics, science and especially in classrooms! This lab is a hands on experience for students to demonstrate the effects of ocean acidification on sea life. Students work collaboratively, collect mass, pH, graph their data, analyze data sets, and use food webs to write a conclusion. Ocean acidification is one of those topics that is not discussed as frequently as it should be! Use this awesome lab in a combination with the climate change Ice core lab and you’re kids will for sure be excited to discuss all the scary side effects of climate change!

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PhD opportunity: Understanding coral reef ecosystem adaptation to ocean acidification in the Pacific

Description: A PhD scholarship is being offered to work with The Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP) alongside leading coastal and marine scientists at the University of Newcastle to examine ocean acidification, adaptation actions and reef resilience through coral restoration in two Pacific Island nations. The research seeks to build capacity to deal with ocean acidification as part of adaptation and resilience strategies for Pacific communities.

Closing Date: 26 July 2019

Funding: This scholarship provides a living allowance of $27,596 per annum (2019 rate) indexed annually. The living allowance scholarship is for 3.5 years and the tuition fee scholarship is for four years.

Eligibility Criteria:
Candidates are required to:
– Meet UON entry requirements in regards to previous qualifications
– Meet UON’s English Language Requirements for PhD study
– Be a citizen of a Pacific Island nation

Continue reading ‘PhD opportunity: Understanding coral reef ecosystem adaptation to ocean acidification in the Pacific’

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.”

Continue reading ‘Factsheet 7 – Our Pacific Ocean, our stories: Learning more about ocean acidification’

Science on a sphere – Ocean acidification: saturation state (interactive graphic)


Ocean acidification is an often overlooked consequence of humankind’s release of carbon dioxide emissions into the atmosphere from fossil fuel burning. Excess carbon dioxide enters the ocean and reacts with water to form carbonic acid, which decreases ocean pH (i.e., makes seawater less basic), and lowers carbonate ion concentrations. Organisms such as corals, clams, oysters, and some plankton use carbonate ions to create their shells and skeletons. Decreases in carbonate ion concentration will make it difficult for these creatures to form hard structures, particularly for juveniles. Ocean acidification may cause some organisms to die, reproduce less successfully, or leave an area. Other organisms such as seagrass and some plankton species may do better in oceans affected by ocean acidification because they use carbon dioxide to photosynthesize, but do not require carbonate ions to survive. Ocean ecosystem diversity and ecosystem services may therefore change dramatically from ocean acidification.

Continue reading ‘Science on a sphere – Ocean acidification: saturation state (interactive graphic)’

Postdoctoral positions in oceanography at the Millennium Institute of Oceanography (IMO), University of Concepcion, Chile

Full-time postdoctoral positions are available starting between September 1st 2019 and January 31st 2020 at the Millennium Institute of Oceanography (IMO) to undertake innovative research and to develop questions in three proposed topics within IMO’s larger research lines. Candidates will have to demonstrate experience and motivation to do research in their preferred research line, using observational, experimental and/or modelling approaches. Successful candidates will be expected to develop their research topics in association with two or more of IMO’s Associate Researchers, to publish their research as first author in high impact journals, to write and help write grants for external funding, and contribute collaboratively to related research projects.

Continue reading ‘Postdoctoral positions in oceanography at the Millennium Institute of Oceanography (IMO), University of Concepcion, Chile’

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Ocean acidification in the IPCC AR5 WG II

OUP book