PMEL Ocean Acidification Home Page

  What is Ocean Acidification

The following images link to further information on ocean acidification:
Ocean Acidification Mooring: As one of the oldest oceanic time series sites, Ocean Station Papa (50°N, 145°W) is a critical site in the global network of OceanSITES time series reference sites. Through support from the US NSF and NOAA and in collaboration with the Canadian DFO Line P Program, a surface mooring was deployed in June 2007 at Ocean Station Papa to monitor ocean-atmosphere interactions, carbon uptake, and ocean acidification.
How is ocean acidity changing? How will ecosystems be affected? What research is being done? For the answers to these questions and more, click the image to the left to go to the Ocean Acidification Network, an information network for the internal scientific community.
Second Symposium on The Ocean in a High-CO2 World 6 - 9 October 2008 Musée Océanographique, Monaco. The purpose of the meeting is to provide an interdisciplinary forum to assess what is known about ocean acidification and to identify priorities for future research. For more information on this symposium, click the image to the left.
The Future Oceans – Warming Up, Rising High, Turning Sour Latest research findings show that failure to check mankind’s emissions of carbon dioxide will have severe consequences for the world’s oceans. The marine environment is doubly affected: continuing warming and ongoing acidification both pose threats. In combination with over-fishing, these two threats are further jeopardizing already weakened fish stocks. Sea-level rise is exposing coastal regions to mounting flood and hurricane risks. Click the image to the left for the full report.
The Ocean Carbon and Biogeochemistry Group seeks to to establish the evolving role of the ocean in the global carbon cycle in the face of environmental change through studies of marine biogeochemical cycles and associated ecosystems. Click on the image at left to read more.
Impacts of Ocean Acidification on Coral Reefs and Other Marine Calcifiers July 5, 2006: Worldwide emissions of carbon dioxide from fossil fuel burning are dramatically altering ocean chemistry and threatening marine organisms, including corals, that secrete skeletal structures and support oceanic biodiversity. The report (accessed via the picture at left) released today summarizes the known effects of increased atmospheric carbon dioxide on these organisms, known as marine calcifiers, and recommends future research for determining the extent of the impacts. Click the image to the left for the full report. (9,677 KB PDF)
Carbon Dioxide and Our Ocean Legacy April 7, 2006: Global climate change is increasing ocean temperatures and raising sea levels. New scientific research shows that our oceans are beginning to face yet another threat due to global climate change - their basic chemistry is changing because of the uptake of carbon dioxide released by human activities. Click the image to the left for the full report. (100KB PDF)
The Dangers of Ocean Acidity:
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April 6, 2006: Are humans changing the chemistry of the world's oceans by burning fossil fuels? Is carbon dioxide a threat to coral reefs and marine ecosystems? The problem starts with fuels like coal and gas that release carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. The excess carbon dioxide contributes to global warming. But carbon dioxide is not just making things hotter. It's also changing the chemistry of the world's oceans. Is the 'acidification' of seawater a threat to the future of coral reefs and other living organisms?
NOAA / NSF Cruise reveals impacts of ocean acidification on chemistry, biology of North Pacific Ocean April 5, 2006: Data collected from ocean sampling in the Pacific Ocean from the southern to northern hemispheres confirms that the oceans are becoming more acidic. A recently completed field study from Tahiti to Alaska collecting data about the effects of ocean acidification on the water chemistry and marine organisms found evidence that verifies earlier computer model projections. These findings are consistent with data from previous field studies conducted in other oceans. Click the image to the left for the full story.
Results from Workshop on the Impacts of Increasing Atmospheric CO2 on Coral Reefs and Other Marine Calcifiers. Calcification rates of several major groups of marine calcifying organisms, from both neritic and pelagic environments, will very likely decrease in response to changes in ocean carbonate chemistry. Although benthic and planktonic calcifiers of both neritic and pelagic communities display a similar response to increased CO2 forcing, important differences exist between the two that will dictate different approaches toward assessing the larger potential effects of reduced calcification on ecosystem structure and function, how the effects could cascade to other ecosystems, and ultimately, the changes in the ocean carbon cycle. Click on the image to the left for results from the April 2005 Workshop in Florida.

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