Archive for the 'Media coverage' Category

Acidification detrimental to ocean health: Pasifika Future

Ocean health is challenged in numerous ways from marine litter to the warming seas.

Academic and Head of Marine Studies at USP, Dr. Stuart Kininmonth explains that another nasty inclusion is acidification.

Speaking at the first Pasifika Future series on Healthy Oceans
co-hosted by the World Bank and USP, Dr. Kininmonth says with the effects of climate change more evident, Pacific communities now find themselves at the front-line of a storm on the horizon.

Continue reading ‘Acidification detrimental to ocean health: Pasifika Future’

University of Victoria to lead study on greenhouse gas impact on oceans

Researchers led by the University of Victoria have been granted $540,000 to study how quickly oceans absorb carbon dioxide produced by human activity — and what the implications could be for the planet’s future.

While the three oceans bordering Canada absorb a massive amount of carbon dioxide, not enough is known about how quickly the process happens or what long-term implications are for ocean acidification and marine life, according to a release.

The project is led by Roberta Hamme, the Canadian Research Chair in ocean carbon dynamics. It will bring together government, researchers and students to figure out how to better model how rising rates of carbon dioxide will affect the oceans around Canada.

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PICRC builds capacity to be the ocean acidification center of the Pacific

Coral reefs provide countless services to small coastal communities. Even so, they face numerous threats resulting from excessive carbon emissions in the atmosphere. Over the past two centuries, climate change has caused a drastic change in the chemistry of our ocean. The process of ocean acidification (OA) makes it more difficult for marine organisms to build their skeletons and shells, such as corals and clams. The potential negative impacts from OA could impact Palau’s food security, economic status, and coastal protection. Therefore, a science-based understanding of the ecological effects of OA is key to effective decision making.

As of June 2019, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has agreed to support Palau International Coral Reef Center (PICRC) to enhance Palau’s national capacities and infrastructure to monitor and assess the impacts of OA. The main objective of this project is the accurately measure and observe OA trends and impacts in marine ecosystems of Palau, thereby maximizing the ability of coral reefs to continue providing important services to the people of Palau. The information gathered from this project will be used to guide management and policy decisions.

Continue reading ‘PICRC builds capacity to be the ocean acidification center of the Pacific’

Washington state advances climate solutions with ocean acidification action plan

The ocean plays a central role in regulating our climate and absorbing human caused greenhouse gas emissions.

Ocean acidity has already increased by 30 percent and is expected to double over pre-industrial levels by the end of this century as a result of the ocean absorbing one-third of the atmospheric carbon dioxide generated by human activities. Significant adverse impacts on fisheries and marine ecosystems have already been documented due to ocean acidification and these impacts will worsen in the future.

Continue reading ‘Washington state advances climate solutions with ocean acidification action plan’

Shellfish growers are feeling climate change’s effects now

Shellfish growers are feeling climate change’s effects now

Ralph Solomon checks on crops of oyster seed at the Lummi Shellfish Hatchery on June 18. Photo Credit: Mathew Roland / BBJ

Shellfish farming in Washington is a multimillion-dollar industry with a history as deep as Puget Sound. However, recent decades of warming oceans and higher levels of ocean acidification continue to challenge shellfish farming practices.

In and around Whatcom County there are several aquaculture farms, such as Lummi Shellfish Hatchery, Drayton Harbor Oyster Co., Blau Oyster and Taylor Shellfish in Samish Bay. Each farm varies in size, number of employees and type of shellfish produced, but they share one thing in common: the water quality of Puget Sound.

Continue reading ‘Shellfish growers are feeling climate change’s effects now’

Training course on best practices for ocean acidification experiments in multi-stressor scenarios

DSC_0553The IAEA Environment Laboratories in Monaco welcomed 16 participants from 16 countries on 24-28 May 2019, for a training course on designing and running multi-stressor experiments. The course taught participants how to use the Multiple Environmental Driver Design Lab for Experiments (MEDDLE), produced by the Scientific Committee on Oceanic Research (SCOR) Working Group 149.  This new product includes a handbook, decision support tools, an experiment simulator, and video tutorials. Participants were able to use these new tools to plan their own experimental designs and research questions. An interdisciplinary lecture team, including members of the SCOR Working Group 149, led this course: Dr. Christina McGraw (University of Otago, New Zealand), Dr. Sam Dupont (University of Gothenburg, Sweden), Dr. Marcello Vichi (University of Cape Town, South Africa),  Dr. Steeve Comeau (Institut de la Mer de Villefranche, France), and Dr. Christian Pansch-Hattich (GEOMAR, Germany).

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Tiny, living stones of the sea

False-colored scanning electron microscope of a coccolithophore species that makes two kinds of limestone plates (shown in brown and light green) and is in the middle of transitioning from one to the other.


It was the summer of 1988 when early-career oceanographer Barney Balch spotted an unusually reflective patch of water in a satellite image of the Gulf of Maine. He and colleagues at the nearby Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences arranged a research cruise to investigate.

Ocean waters in this part of the temperate Atlantic typically run a deep sapphire hue. But this patch was much lighter, more typical of a tropical isle. “We got out in the middle of this thing and the water was basically turquoise in color from horizon to horizon,” Balch says. “You would have thought we had run aground in Bimini.”

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Ocean acidification in the IPCC AR5 WG II

OUP book