Archive for the 'Newsletters and reports' Category

New report shows ocean acidification (OA) in Puget Sound waters continues as our understanding of patterns grows

New Report Released: Automated buoys and volunteers helped gather critical Puget Sound data during pandemic

On October 27, the Puget Sound Marine Waters Work Group of the Puget Sound Ecosystem Monitoring Program released the tenth annual report on marine water conditions in Puget Sound providing a comprehensive long-term view and current assessment of the Puget Sound marine ecosystem. There were few extreme weather or ecological events in 2020, but overall, conditions in Puget Sound were generally warmer, sunnier, and wetter than in typical years. The report further reveals patterns and trends in numerous environmental parameters, including plankton, water quality, climate, and marine life. The observations in this report collectively provide both a comprehensive long-term view and current assessment of the Puget Sound marine ecosystem.

Calm water on a cloudy day with some blue in the sky with an empty ferry terminal and a ferry in the distance
New Puget Sound Marine Waters 2020 Report Released:  Automated buoys and volunteers helped gather critical Puget Sound data during pandemic. Photo Credit: Puget Sound Partnership 2021

In Puget Sound, ocean acidification (OA) continues as does our understanding of patterns. Annual average atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) values over Hood Canal were high relative to globally averaged marine surface air, yet were at the same level as in 2019. OA in Puget Sound is of particular concern as estuarine processes, both natural and human-mediated, can also increase the CO2 content and lower the pH of marine waters. Moreover, coastal upwelling brings deeper waters with naturally higher CO2 concentrations upwards and into Puget Sound via the Strait of Juan de Fuca. Thus, Puget Sound is influenced by a variety of drivers that exacerbate the growing OA signal, making our waters particularly sensitive to these conditions. All of these changes have ramifications for marine food webs and are areas of active current research, including PMEL’s  Moored Autonomous pCO2 (MAPCO2TM) system collecting on atmospheric and surface seawater xCO2 (mole fraction of CO2) at the Ćháʔba· mooring off of La Push, WA and at the Cape Elizabeth mooring

Having high-quality observations of carbon in the coastal environment is important for understanding coastal ocean carbon and its impact throughout the water column and the ecosystem. Learn more about PMEL’s Carbon and Ocean Acidification Research.

Read the full report here.

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Climate-smart decisions in our changing world

NOAA delivers the science, data, services and solutions that help the world address the climate crisis.

An integral part of the Department of Commerce, NOAA observes and predicts our changing environment from the depths of the oceans to the surface of the sun, shares that knowledge with others, and is responsible for conserving and managing America’s coastal and marine resources, all with a focus on science, service and stewardship.

NOAA’s climate science, services and decision-making tools—everything from greenhouse gas measurements to sea level rise projections—are used in communities in the U.S. and around the world to keep people safe during extreme weather, drive business decisions for industries like agriculture and transportation, and help build infrastructure for the future.

Demand for NOAA’s information is increasing, as the world sees more frequent and more costly extreme weather and climate-related disasters. Investments in NOAA’s climate research, data, tools, and capacity-building are a key part of the United States’ whole-of-government response to the climate crisis.

NOAA is centering equity in all aspects of our work in order to produce better science, deliver better services, be better stewards of the environment and economy, and build a more inclusive workforce.

Learn about NOAA’s commitment to addressing the climate crisis at:

NOAA is committed to helping the world respond to climate change through its mission of delivering climate science, service, and stewardship.

Advancing the state of the science for sea-level rise. Collaborating with several U.S. agencies, NOAA will publish updated sea-level rise and extreme coastal water projections for every U.S. state and territory, filling gaps for rural and underserved regions. This data is key for advancing how we plan for coastal resilience, infrastructure and emergencies.

Enhancing the World Ocean Database. NOAA will develop and deploy a new tool within the World Ocean Database to help ocean data users easily discover and access immense volumes of globally distributed ocean information. Partnering with the International Oceanographic Commission, this investment will increase timely, high quality input for climate forecast models, as well as seasonal and longer time-scale monitoring.

Opening a Pacific Islands ocean acidification training center. NOAA and the U.S. Department of State are partnering with the South Pacific Community, the University of the South Pacific, and The Ocean Foundation to launch a new training center in Fiji to expand capacity for ocean acidification monitoring and research across the Pacific Islands. Understanding how ocean acidification affects local coral reefs and fisheries will enable better protection for the ecosystems, livelihoods, and economies they support.

Launching the NOAA Blue Carbon Inventory. In partnership with the U.S. Department of State, NOAA will provide technical support to countries to incorporate coastal blue carbon into their National Greenhouse Gas Inventories (NGGI). NOAA will focus on 3-5 geographically-diverse countries, amplifying the impact of this investment through regional partnerships, interagency collaboration, and activities such as the development of guidebooks, workshops and training materials. This metric is an important way countries track progress towards achieving their climate ambitions.

Establishing a globally operational Surface Ocean CO2 Reference Network. The network will integrate established and proposed national and regional surface ocean carbon dioxide (CO2) research and monitoring efforts into a global framework, enabling countries to track changes in global ocean uptake of CO2 over time. Through international engagement, NOAA will facilitate the development of the global network and produce high-value products, such as observation-based annual updates of ocean carbon uptake and changes in ocean acidification, that are critical for decision making about ocean-based mitigation options and marine ecosystem health.

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Ocean acidification in Africa

A major food fish in African coastal communities, parrotfish such as these rely on healthy coral reefs that could disappear in an acidifying ocean.

Ocean chemistry is rapidly changing

A healthy ocean provides many human services: food, medicine, cultural practices; income from commercial fisheries and tourism; and, coral reefs for coastal storm protection.

In an acidifying ocean, corals are struggling to maintain skeletons that create reefs. Lobsters, oysters, urchins, and many phyo- and zoo-plankton species that build skeletons also suffer from this stress, disrupting the marine food web.

Coastal communities in Africa are being impacted

Many African countries rely heavily on the sea for economic, social, and nutritional services. However, ocean acidification has the potential to negatively affect those marine ecosystems. The losses would be alarming for the African continent. Fisheries and aquaculture currently contribute USD $24 billion to the economy in Africa, employing more than 12 million people across the continent. The fisheries sector is particularly important for rural coastal African populations, which are among the most vulnerable in terms of both food and job security. Due to the growing population and per capita income, demand for fish in Africa is expected to increase 30% by 2030. Ocean acidification, combined with other climatic drivers, may make it difficult to satisfy this need.

Ocean acidification research demands unique local, national, and regional responses

Addressing and mitigating ocean acidification will require a drastic decrease in global CO2 emissions, but it is possible to develop local adaptive solutions to increase ecosystem resilience by addressing specific societal coastal community priorities. Strategic ocean acidification data are critical for the development and implementation of such solutions, including the identification of ocean acidification hot spots.

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State of Hawai‘i ocean acidification action plan 2021 -2031

The State of Hawaiʻi Ocean Acidification Action Plan was developed by the Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR) Division of Aquatic Resources (DAR) with support from the Hawai‘i Department of Health, Hawai‘i Department of Agriculture, the State of Hawai‘i Climate Change and Mitigation Commission, the University of Hawai‘i – School of Ocean and Earth Science and Technology, University of Hawai‘i Sea Grant College Program, the International Alliance to Combat Ocean Acidification, and many other partners and stakeholders.

This Ocean Acidification Action Plan for the State of Hawai‘i is based feedback from state departments, local experts, and partners on local Hawai‘i issues, and from the International Alliance to Combat Ocean Acidification’s “Action Plan Toolkit”, which was developed through the West Coast Consortium, a partnership of the States of Washington, Oregon, California, and the province of British Columbia.

The State of Hawai‘i activities, projects, and programs that have related to ocean acidification are jointly done by a number of departments and partners. This plan outlines existing activities that State Departments and partners are involved in, as well as forecasting future needs for activities projects, and programs from collaborative partnerships. For this reason, there was effort to put a stand alone plan together as well as integrate ocean acidification and climate considerations into other state plans.

DAR held several webinars to share the recent scientific understand of ocean acidification in Hawai‘i and talk about the ways different states have built their Ocean Acidification Action Plans, and some pathways forward the State of Hawai‘i could take. COVID-19 changed the way that we were able to host meetings and workshops, and so DAR hosted meetings with the contributors with a focus on each Goal related to their expertise to develop objectives and actions. DAR brought the 5 overall goals developed to the State Climate Change and Mitigation Commission for approval as part of the plan development process.

This Ocean Acidification Action Plan is the first of an iterative planning document that provides a strategic vision for developing and coordinating action around ocean acidification and the ocean-climate nexus. The State’s actions will include ways to be understand, adapt, and mitigate, communicate, and network to combat the impacts of ocean acidification in Hawai‘i. In future years, more comprehensive progress reports will include updates of actions implemented by this plan, and edits or changes to suggested actions can be made.

It will be important for State Legislature to create a formal working group of State and County that can guide the implementation and updates to this plan.

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Ocean acidification (OA) in the Baltic Sea from a Swedish perspective

This report is produced as part of the project “Baltic Sea Acidification Mitigation” (BALSAM), supported by the Swedish Institute. The aim of this report and other, corresponding reports (produced for the other countries participating in BALSAM) is primarily to inform environmental NGOs and other stakeholders interested in environmental issues. The aim of this country report is to provide information on Ocean Acidification (OA) in the Baltic Sea with special emphasis on Swedish waters, and to provide an insight into the research and monitoring that are the basis of the current understanding of OA in these waters. This is done as support for campaigning towards mitigation of greenhouse gases and protection of the seas. Whereas this document is not a comprehensive literature review, it is intended as a timely guide to the concept of OA, and does contain key publications and links to further indepth reading and sources of additional information.

Ocean acidification (OA) comes in the wake of climate change as the result of increased atmospheric CO2, which is taken up by the oceans. About 30 % of the CO2 that is emitted to the atmosphere because of human activity ends up in the waterbodies. Part of the CO2 reacts with water, and forms carbonic acid. Some of the carbonic acid dissociates, resulting in bicarbonate and in hydrogen ions. This process leads to acidification (lower pH, i.e. higher concentration of hydrogen ions). Organisms in the oceans are adapted to the pH-conditions that have prevailed in the seas prior to this human driven acidification-process. Especially calcifying organisms are sensitive to acidification, but the physiology of many other organisms can be affected as well, as can the complex ecological interactions between organisms. In a global setting, ongoing and projected effects of OA have been extensively described in several IPCC reports (e.g. IPCC, 2018, 2019).

In Sweden, an interdisciplinary review on causes and consequences of OA in the Swedish Seas (including both the Baltic Sea and the more saline waters of Skagerrak at the Swedish west coast), as well as knowledge gaps, was published relatively recently as part of work supported by the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences (Havenhand et al. 2017). Additionally, in the same context, a scientific review focusing on the ecological consequences of OA was published by Havenhand et al. in 2019. A policy brief1 on OA in the Baltic Sea was furthermore published in 2020 by The Baltic Sea Centre of Stockholm University (Gustafsson & Winder 2020). This policy brief provides a general view of OA as support for policy making.

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Ocean State Report 5


The Ocean State Report is an annual publication of the Copernicus Marine Service and Mercator Ocean International [3] providing a comprehensive, state-of-the-art report on the current state, natural variations, and ongoing changes in the global ocean and European regional seas. The goal of the Ocean State Report is to provide reliable and scientifically-assured information, drawing on data from the 1970s to present. The report is written by over 150 scientific experts from more than 30 European institutions.  

There is particular emphasis on European seas, as the Ocean State Report is meant to act not only as a reference for a global audience, but more directly for the activities of the European Union.  

The Ocean State Report 5 Summary is now available online from the Copernicus Marine Service and Mercator Ocean International (the full report from the JOO will be available in the next 24 hours). This annual publication provides a comprehensive and state-of-the-art report on the current state, natural variations, and ongoing changes in the European regional seas and global ocean, particularly in 2019. Available in a concise, illustrated, and easily accessible format, the Summary (available in English and French) is intended to act as a reference for the scientific community, policy-makers, and the general public to better understand the importance and impacts of a changing ocean.  

The Summary is divided into four chapters, presenting the data of a changing ocean from several angles. Chapters one, two, and three present the state and key observations of a changing ocean, examine the evolving impacts of these changes in line with climate change, and discuss the importance of sustainable ocean governance for managing impacts. The Summary concludes with chapter four which highlights new tools developed using Copernicus Marine Service products and illustrates how accurate and timely information is key to monitoring, understanding, and adapting to a changing ocean.  The sections below highlight the key points discussed in each chapter.  





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New report shows impacts of climate change and extreme weather in Latin America and Caribbean (text & video)

LAC State of the Climate 2020

Climate change and extreme weather are threatening human health and safety, food, water and energy security and the environment in Latin America and the Caribbean. The impacts span the entire region, including Andean peaks, mighty river basins and low-lying islands, according to a new report from the World Meteorological Organization (WMO). It flags concerns about fires and the loss of forests which are a vital carbon sink.

The “State of the Climate in Latin America and the Caribbean 2020” provides a snapshot of the effects of increasing temperatures, changing precipitation patterns, storms and retreating glaciers. It includes transboundary analyses, such as of the drought of the South American Pantanal and the intense hurricane season in Central America-Caribbean. It provides a detailed regional breakdown of worsening global climate change indicators.

The report and an accompanying story map show how marine life, coastal ecosystems and the human communities that depend on them, particularly in Small Island Developing States, are facing increasing threats from ocean acidification and heat and rising sea levels.

The report was released at a high-level conference on 17 August, “Working together for weather, climate and water resilience in Latin America and the Caribbean” under the auspices of WMO, the UN Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (UNECLAC), and the UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNDRR).

It follows the release of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report on Climate Change 2021: the Physical Science basis, which said that temperatures in the region have increased more than the global average and are likely to continue to do so. It also projected changing precipitation patterns, more sea level rise, coastal flooding and marine heatwaves.

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AR6 Climate change 2021: the physical science basis

The Working Group I contribution to the Sixth Assessment Report addresses the most up-to-date physical understanding of the climate system and climate change, bringing together the latest advances in climate science, and combining multiple lines of evidence from paleoclimate, observations, process understanding, and global and regional climate simulations.

Disclaimer: The Summary for Policymakers (SPM) is the approved version from the 14th session of Working Group I and 54th Session of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and remains subject to final copy-editing and layout.

The Technical Summary (TS), the full Report Chapters, the Annexes and the Supplementary Materials are the Final Government Distribution versions, and remain subject to revisions following the SPM approval, corrigenda, copy-editing, and layout.

Full report

CHANGING by Alisa Singer
Changing by the artist Alisa Singer
“As we witness our planet transforming around us we watch, listen, measure … respond.”

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Global warming ‘unequivocally’ human driven, at unprecedented rate: IPCC

A wildfire burns in a national park in Oregon, USA.
A wildfire burns in a national park in Oregon, USA. Unsplash/Marcus Kauffman

Climate change is widespread, rapid, and intensifying, and some trends are now irreversible, at least during the present time frame, according to the latest much-anticipated Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report, released on Monday.

Human-induced climate change is already affecting many weather and climate extremes in every region across the globe. Scientists are also observing changes across the whole of Earth’s climate system; in the atmosphere, in the oceans, ice floes, and on land.

Many of these changes are unprecedented, and some of the shifts are in motion now, while some – such as continued sea level rise – are already ‘irreversible’ for centuries to millennia, aheadthe report warns.

But there is still time to limit climate change, IPCC experts say. Strong and sustained reductions in emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2) and other greenhouse gases, could quickly make air quality better, and in 20 to 30 years global temperatures could stabilize.

‘Code red for humanity’

The UN Secretary-General António Guterres said the Working Group’s report was nothing less than “a code red for humanity. The alarm bells are deafening, and the evidence is irrefutable”.

He noted that the internationally-agreed threshold of 1.5 degrees above pre-industrial levels of global heating was “perilously close. We are at imminent risk of hitting 1.5 degrees in the near term. The only way to prevent exceeding this threshold, is by urgently stepping up our efforts, and persuing the most ambitious path.

“We must act decisively now, to keep 1.5 alive.”

The UN chief in a detailed reaction to the report, said that solutions were clear. “Inclusive and green economies, prosperity, cleaner air and better health are possible for all, if we respond to this crisis with solidarity and courage”, he said.

He added that ahead of the crucial COP26 climate conference in Glasgow in November, all nations – especiall the advanced G20 economies – needed to join the net zero emissions coaltion, and reinforce their promises on slowing down and reversing global heating, “with credible, concrete, and enhanced Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs)” that lay out detailed steps.

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Key climate change effects on the coastal and marine environment around the Pacific UK Overseas Territories

• Climate-driven changes in the central south Pacific Ocean will cause widespread warming of ocean waters, altered circulation, increased stratification of the water column and limited nutrient supply to the surface, decreasing dissolved oxygen, ocean acidification and rising sea levels. These changes will impact marine and terrestrial ecosystems and the communities they support.

• Ultimately, important sectors, such as fisheries and tourism, will be affected by these changes, as will food and water security and essential services, such as energy, transport of goods and coastal protection.

• Coral reefs are unlikely to experience significant heat stress, but should they be impacted by changes in sea temperature, including cold water intrusion, their recovery appears challenging due to the islands’ isolation and therefore the low supply of healthy coral larvae from other reef systems. By the end of the century, even under lowemissions scenarios, acidification conditions in the seawater around the Pitcairn Islands are likely to become marginal for coral calcification.

• Increasing Sea Surface Temperature (SST), ocean acidification and related changes to oxygen concentrations and stratification are expected to affect the health of coral reefs that support coastal fisheries in the Pitcairn Islands, and reduce productivity. Pelagic tuna fisheries are also expected to be affected by climate change with a slight increase in biomass for all tuna species projected for this part of the central south Pacific Ocean.

• Rising sea levels, storm surges, severe storm events and heavy rains will impact infrastructure networks on Pitcairn Island and the safe transport of goods via shipping to the island. Integrating climate change considerations into existing and new infrastructure is essential for building resilience to future climate change impacts.

• Downscaled projections for the Pitcairn Islands (at a relevant scale) will be particularly important for SST, since it is postulated that coral reefs and marine species may be buffered from regional increasing SST due to circulation patterns. This dynamic needs to be examined further to determine if it is in fact occurring or likely to occur, and therefore improve understanding on the potential impacts of increasing SST on marine ecosystems.

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Indicator assessment: ocean acidification

Currently, the ocean takes up about one quarter of global CO2 emissions from human activities. The uptake of CO2 in the sea causes ocean acidification, as the pH of sea water declines.
Ocean surface pH declined from 8.2 to below 8.1 over the industrial era as a result of an increase in atmospheric CO2 concentrations. This decline corresponds to an increase in oceanic acidity of about 30 %.

European Environment Agency, 25 June 2021. Resource.

Resource type: website

Resource format: webpage

JPI Strategy

Developed with JPI Oceans members and co-created with stakeholders, the Strategy Framework launched online on Monday 29 March, provides a coherent setting for the coming years for efficient and impactful pan-European research and innovation, in support of healthy and productive seas and ocean.

Resource type: website

Resource format: webpage

JPI Oceans, 1 March 2021. Resource.

Summary for policymakers

Ocean acidification research is growing rapidly. The Third Symposium on the Ocean in a High-CO2 World (Monterey, California, September 2012) convened 540 experts from 37 countries to discuss the results of research into ocean acidification, its impacts on ecosystems, socio-economic consequences and implications for policy. More than twice as many scientists participated in the Monterey symposium compared to the previous symposium four years earlier. Here we present a summary of the state of knowledge on ocean acidification based on the latest research presented at the symposium and beyond.

Resource type: website

Resource format: document/pdf

IGBP, IOC, SCOR, 4 July 1905. Resource.

New report highlights why the ocean matters in climate negotiations & suggests positive actions nations can take as the countdown to COP26 is underway

Leading UK experts shine a spotlight on the critical role the ocean plays in greatly slowing the rate of climate change but also the subsequent impacts of this and why support from nations for better inclusion of the ocean at the United Nations climate negotiations, such as COP26 in Glasgow this November, is so important.

The briefing, led by Plymouth Marine Laboratory, summarises the latest research and knowledge on the importance of the ocean, as well as offering a range of opportunities to nations in order to ensure that the ocean can be developed sustainably for the benefits it provides to people around the world.

Developed by a team of experts from leading UK marine and environmental science universities and centres and published in association with the COP26 Universities Network, the briefing also makes suggestions on how the ocean can be better incorporated in the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) process.

The key messages are:

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Measuring coastal acidification using in situ sensors in the National Estuary Program

Estuaries and coastal areas are highly vulnerable to the impacts of acidification on shellfish, coral reefs, fisheries, and the commercial and recreational industries that they support. Yet, little is known about the extent of this vulnerability and the estuary-specific drivers that contribute to acidification, such as nutrient enrichment from stormwater, agriculture and wastewater discharges, upwelling of CO2 -rich seawater, elevated atmospheric CO2 from urban and agricultural activities, benthic and marsh-driven processes, and alkalinity and carbon content of freshwater flows. Comprehensive, high resolution monitoring data are needed at varying spatial and temporal scales to provide actionable information tailored to each estuary. Because carbonate chemistry in the coastal environment can be affected by nutrient dynamics, understanding how nutrient inputs exacerbate acidification impacts is essential for the formulation of estuary-specific actions.

EPA supports coastal acidification monitoring and research in various ways (Table 1). The purpose of this report is to share EPA’s approach to long-term coastal acidification monitoring in which it initiated the use of autonomous monitoring sensors for dissolved carbon dioxide (pCO2) and pH deployed in situ in estuaries across the country through EPA’s National Estuary Programs (NEP) and their partners. This approach captures the high-resolution data that are needed to understand variability associated with acidification and ultimately to inform trends and mitigation and adaptation strategies for these vulnerable systems. This report details the plans and experiences of ten NEPs geographically distributed around the U.S. coast and their partners in conducting this monitoring over the last four years (2015–2019). The report illustrates the monitoring goals, deployment methods, data analysis, costs, preliminary results, and the role of partnerships in their successes. The preliminary results have already improved our understanding of baseline carbonate chemistry conditions in these estuaries, the factors affecting spatial and temporal variability, and the drivers responsible for changes in pCO2 and associated acidification. The sensors are successfully capturing seasonal variability and finer temporal trends that provide information on diel variability, physical processes (e.g., weather, tides), and biological activity which cannot be captured with discrete sampling alone. The preliminary data indicate that there are regional differences in the drivers of acidification, particularly the influence of upwelling events vs. land-based freshwater sources. Several of these NEPs have calculated aragonite saturation state, an indicator of conditions in which mollusk shells begin to dissolve and have identified certain vulnerable conditions for shellfish and other economically-important species in their estuaries.

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Plastic and toxic chemical induced ocean acidification will cause a plankton crisis that will devastate humanity over the next 25 Years, unless we act now to stop the pollution

Planktonic plants and animals at the base of the marine food chain make all life on Earth possible. Without them the atmosphere would be toxic from carbon dioxide, we would have no oxygen and there would be no whales, birds or fish in the oceans.

Over the last 70 years, more than 50% of all marine life has been lost from the world’s oceans, and it continues to decline at rate of 1% year on year. Atmospheric carbon dioxide causes ocean acidification, and a loss of marine plants and animals accelerates the process.

A small increase in acidity caused by carbon dioxide dissolves magnesium calcite and aragonite, forms of calcium carbonate upon which 50% of all marine life including plankton and coral reefs are composed. Over the next 25 years, the pH will continue to drop from pH8.04 to pH7.95, and an estimated 80% to 90% of all marine life will be lost from the oceans. Even if the world achieves net zero by 2045, atmospheric carbon dioxide will still exceed 500ppm and the oceans will still drop to pH 7.95.

Based on current climate change policy of carbon mitigation, we will not be able to stop the loss of most marine life, which includes fish and the food supply for 3 billion people. In addition, we lose the life support system for the planet. This decline has gone largely unnoticed because most of the plants and animals in the oceans are under 1 mm in size and they are not closely monitored. By way of an example: Prochlorococcus, a cyanobacteria responsible for making 20% of our oxygen, was only discovered in the 1985.

Ocean acidification and climate change cannot adequately describe the loss of marine life. 30% of the ocean have high nutrient (nitrate) concentrations but zero or only low plant growth. If it is not the lack of nutrients or trace nutrients, responsible for the loss of marine life, then this just leaves aquatic environmental pollution as the last plausible explanation. The impact of chemical and micro-plastic pollution on planktonic marine life has been almost completed ignored by the scientific community, and as such industry and governments have not been alerted to the impending threat to the oceans.

This is potentially a good news story, because the solution will be to eliminate pollution from plastic and toxic chemicals or develop green alternatives that do not harm to the environment or humans. We still need to reduce carbon from the burning of fossil fuels, but the priority over the next 25 years should be to protect the oceans, because all life on earth depends upon marine life in the world’s oceans.

Questions and answer on GOES Report.

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A sea of change: Europe’s future in the Atlantic realm


However cold it may seem to some of us in a Scandinavian winter, northern Europe enjoys a relatively mild regional climate for our latitude, thanks to the massive amounts of heat brought up from the subtropics by circulation patterns in the North Atlantic Ocean. So it is no surprise that suggestions that this heat transport may weaken or ‘switch off’ attracts much media attention, with headlines that may refer to ‘tipping points’ or ‘collapse’ of the overturning circulation that brings warm surface waters all the way to the Arctic Circle. Studies of the ocean climate on long timescales have found these processes to have stopped or seriously reduced, generally following large freshwater discharges caused by rapid melting of glacial or multi-year ice in the Arctic. Were this to happen, there could be the paradox that global warming can lead to a colder climate for some of us!

With Greenland and Arctic ice melting at a rapid rate owing to the current rates of global warming, and the evidence from past climates, the future of the Atlantic conveyer has become an important topic for research programmes, and scientific papers are step-by-step improving our understanding of the underlying processes and current trends. The overturning circulation that includes the influx of waters from the subtropics to as far as the Arctic is reported to be weakening, but there is not yet a consensus on trends. At the same time, sea levels are rising and seawater acidification continues, placing additional stresses and uncertainties in safeguarding Europe’s seas and coasts and the resources and ecosystem services that they provide. Europe is also looking to the seas to provide new resources, particularly renewable energy but also a range of activities under the general label of the Blue Economy.

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Ocean Acidification Community of Practice: quarterly newsletter – June 2021

Our newest Quarterly Newsletter (June, 2021) has arrived and is full of exciting updates, including a call for collaborators on our Letter of Intent for the Climate Action and Awareness Fund grant proposals, snapshots from our blog, and our new resources (including a new Webinars page with our past webinar recordings)! 

OA CoP June 2021 Newsletter.pdf

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New edition of the “OA-ICC Highlights”, January-April 2021

The new edition of the “OA-ICC Highlights”, our newsletter, summarizes the project’s main activities and achievements over the period January-April 2021. This newsletter highlights a virtual OA conference with OA-Africa Network to celebrate the Day of Ocean Acidification Action, OA-ICC assesses global capacity building efforts and joined GOA-ON for the planning for the UN Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development program (2021-2030), a dedicate session on Monaco Ocean Week and the welcoming of a new staff. Previous editions can be viewed here.

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Integrated ocean carbon research: a summary of ocean carbon research, and vision of coordinated ocean carbon research and observations for the next decade

The Integrated Ocean Carbon Research (IOC-R) programme is a formal working group of the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC) that was formed in 2018 in response to the United Nations (UN) Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development (2021-2030), “the Decade.” The IOC-R will contribute to the science elements of the overarching Implementation Plan for the Decade1. The Implementation Plan is a high-level framework to guide actions by which ocean science can more effectively deliver its contribution and co-development with other entities to achieve the societal outcomes outlined in the Decade plan and the sustainable development goals (SDGs) of the UN.

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