The ocean absorbs a significant portion of our carbon dioxide emissions, which is changing the chemistry of the ocean at an unprecedented rate. About one third of all emissions in the past 200 years have been absorbed by the ocean, causing an average pH decrease of ocean surface waters by about 0.1 unit – from 8.2 to 8.1. This change has already caused short-term, local impacts on ocean flora and fauna. The ultimate, long-term consequences of an increasingly acidic ocean may be unknown, but the potential risks are high. Ocean acidification is a growing problem as anthropogenic carbon dioxide emissions continue to change the atmosphere and climate. It is estimated that by the end of the century, there will be an additional drop of 0.2–0.3 units.
On our Ocean Acidification Initiative page you can learn about the work we are doing to research and understand OA in order to mitigate its effects. Here we have compiled some of the best resources on this topic.
National Caucus of Environmental Legislators. NCEL Fact Sheet: Ocean Acidification.
A fact sheet detailing key points, legislation, and other information regarding OA.
Malsbury, E. (2020, February 3) “Samples from Famed 19th Century Voyage Reveal ‘Shocking’ Effects of Ocean Acidification.” Science Magazine. AAAS. Retrieved from: https://www.sciencemag.org/news/2020/02/plankton-shells-have-become-dangerously-thin-acidifying-oceans-are-blame?fbclid=IwAR0GIK-93IBh0phYeAM1GJMUgdv4E4I6NnoYIHxAZyeoxpxGuaONiEDQWYg
Shell samples, collected from the HMS Challenger in 1872-76, are considerably thicker than shells of the same type found today. Researchers made this discovery when the nearly 150-year-old shells from the collection of London’s Museum of Natural History were compared to modern specimens of the same time. Scientists used the ship’s log to find the exact species, location, and time of year the shells were collected and used this to collect modern samples. The comparison was clear the modern shells were up to 76% thinner than their historic counterpart and the results point to ocean acidification as the cause.
MacRae, Gavin (12 April 2019.) “Ocean Acidification is Reshaping Marine Food Webs.” Watershed Sentinel.
The depths of the ocean are slowing climate change, but at a cost. Seawater acidity is increasing as the oceans absorb carbon dioxide from fossil fuels.
Spalding, Mark J. (21 January 2019.) “Commentary: The ocean is changing – it’s getting more acidic.” Channel News Asia.
All life on earth will eventually be affected as an increasingly warm and acidic ocean produces less oxygen, The Ocean Foundation President Mark J Spalding points out.
Lemonick, S. (13 December 2016.) “How rising ocean acidity could send us into a downward spiral.” Forbes Magazine.
Ocean acidification is disrupting plankton blooms, which is disturbing because these blooms help mitigate the effects of carbon dioxide pollution.
Greene, S. (8 July 2016.) “The damage wrought by acidic oceans hurts more than marine life and lasts longer than you think.” Los Angeles Times.
With greater acidity of the ocean, phytoplankton can only capture and store carbon up to a certain point. Scientists find that they abandon their calcifying process when too much carbon is absorbed into the ocean and acidification increases.
Brennan, D.S. (19 April 2016.) “West Coast fisheries are at risk as climate change disturbs the ocean’s chemistry.” Los Angeles Times.
Oyster production in the Pacific Northwest dropped 22% between 2005 and 2009 and major oyster hatcheries saw production crash.
Ocean Science Trust. (4 April 2016.) “Leading ocean scientists recommend action plan to combat changes to seawater chemistry.” Eureka Alert! The Global Source for Science News (AAAS). Retrieved from http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2016-04/ost-los033016.php#.
A 20-member scientific panel warns that increases in global carbon dioxide emissions are acidifying waters of the North American West Coast at an accelerating rate; severe ecological consequences are anticipated. The West Coast OA and Hypoxia panel specifically recommends exploring approaches that involve the use of seagrass to remove carbon dioxide from seawater as a primary remedy to OA on the west coast.
Novelli, C. (21 September 2015). Our Fate Tied to the Ocean’s Fate. US Department of State: 2015 Remarks From the Under Secretary for Economic Growth, Energy, and the Environment. Op-ed. Retrieved from http://www.state.gov/e/rls/rmk/247157.htm.
In preparation for the United Nations meeting on the adoption of the Sustainable Development Goals, Catherine Novelli, Under Secretary for Economic Growth, Energy, and the Environment at the US Department of State, emphasizes the importance of Goal 14: conservation and sustainable use of the world’s ocean, seas, and marine resources.
GEOMAR (2015, May 8). Scientists Study Ocean Acidification Effects at Raunefjord. Subsea World News. Retrieved from http://subseaworldnews.com
Scientists from GEOMAR Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research Kiel address key questions about the impacts of OA on the food web and biogeochemical cycling.
Coimbra, C. (2014, April 10). Two Tales of Acidification – The Old and the New. Neptune 911!. Retrieved from https://neptune911.wordpress.com/
This article discusses the recent Science study that asserts that OA, triggered by massive volcanic eruptions, helped cause the worst mass extinction event in the history of life on Earth (the Permo-Triassic Boundary mass extinction event). It also tells a story of current deep sea coral research.
Whittle, P. (2015, March 29). New England states following a model set by Maine to reduce ocean acidity. Portland Press Herald. Retrieved from www.pressherald.com
A group of state legislators believe that acidity will endanger multimillion dollar fishing industries if left unchecked.
Lakshmi, A. (2015, February 28). Satellite Images Reveal Ocean Acidification. Marine Technology News. Retrieved from http://www.marinetechnologynews.com/news/satellite-images-reveal-ocean-509822
Ocean acidification can now be seen from space, highlighting an ongoing danger of climate change and revealing the regions most at risk.
Hemphill, A. (2015, February 17). Maryland Takes Action to Address Ocean Acidification. Mid-Atlantic Regional Council on the Ocean. Retrieved from http://www.midatlanticocean.org
The state of Maryland is in the forefront of states taking decisive action to address the impacts of OA. Maryland passed House Bill 118, creating a task force to study the impact of OA on state waters during its 2014 session. The task force focused on seven key areas to improve OA understanding.
Pappas, S. (2015, February 17). Global Ocean Acidity Revealed in New Maps. LiveScience. Retrieved from http://www.livescience.com
Scientists are now using satellite measurements to create global maps of ocean acidity that complement on-the-ground data and show which areas are most affected.
State Directed Task Force Reports
State of Maine 126th Legislature. Commission to Study the Effects of Coastal and Ocean Acidification and its Existing and Potential Effects on Species that are Commercially Harvested and Grown Along the Maine Coast. Web. January 2015.
Pacific Coast Collaborative (PCC) Projects
Leaders from Alaska, California, Oregon, Washington, and British Columbia signed the Pacific Coast Collaborative Agreement in 2008, bringing together Pacific leaders as a common front to set a cooperative direction for the west coast. Out of this agreement was born the PCC, a formal basis for cooperative action, a forum for information sharing, and a common voice for issues facing this area. The following products have come out of the PPC’s joint research into OA on the west coast.
- From Threats to Opportunities: An Overview of West Coast Efforts to Address Ocean Acidification and Hypoxia and a Roadmap for Advancements
- Addressing Hypoxia and Ocean Acidification on the West Coast
- Overview of the Panel’s emerging findings and products
Amaratunga, C. 2015. What the devil is ocean acidification (OA) and why should we care? Marine Environmental Observation Predication and Response Network (MEOPAR). Canada.
This guest editorial covers a convening of marine scientists and members of the aquaculture industry in Victoria, BC where leaders discussed the worrisome phenomenon of OA and its impacts on Canada’s oceans and aquaculture.
America and the Ocean: ocean acidification. (2012). Providence, RI: The Ocean Project.
The Ocean Project published this special report in the summer of 2012 to report on results from their ongoing market research initiative on raising public awareness of OA. They suggest based on their baseline data that now is the time for zoos, aquariums, and museums to engage their visitors with the issue of OA. They show that awareness of OA is low, but once aware of the issue, concern spikes significantly, providing an opportunity for aquariums and informal science centers to frame OA accurately, raise awareness, and inspire action.
Arctic Monitoring and Assessment Programme
- AMAP, 2014. Arctic Ocean Acidification 2013: An Overview. AMAP, Oslo, 2014
- AMAP, 2013. AMAP Arctic Ocean Acidification Assessment: Key Findings
- AMAP, 2013. AMAP Arctic Ocean Acidification Assessment: Summary for Policy-makers. This document presents the Executive Summary of the 2013 Arctic Ocean Acidification (AOA) Assessment.
- Film presenting the results of AMAPs 2013 assessment of Arctic Ocean acidification.
Center for Ocean Solutions. 2012. Why Ocean Acidification Matters to California, and What California Can Do About It: A Report on the Power of California’s State Government to Address Ocean Acidification in State Waters. Stanford Woods Institute for the Environment, Stanford University, California.
This report focuses on California’s legal and policy options to mitigate the causes of OA, as well as funding sources for implementing water quality policies. It includes a brief scientific description of ocean chemistry, ecology, and biology.
Committee on Environment, Natural Resources, and Sustainability of the National Science and Technology Council. April 2015. Third Report on Federally funded Ocean Acidification Research and Monitoring Activities.
This document was developed by the Interagency Working Group on Ocean Acidification, which advises, assists, and makes recommendations on matters related to ocean acidification, including coordination of Federal activities. This report summarizes federally funded ocean-acidification research and monitoring activities; provides expenditures for these activities; and describes the recent release of a strategic research plan for Federal research and monitoring of ocean acidification.
Environmental Consequences of Ocean Acidification: A Threat to Food Security. (2010). Nairobi, Kenya. UNEP.
This article covers the relationship between CO2, climate change, and OA, the impact of OA on marine food resources, and concludes with a list of 8 necessary actions to mitigate the risk of effects of ocean acidification.
Feely, R. A., C. L. Sabine, & V. J. Fabry. (2006). Carbon Dioxide and Our Ocean Legacy. Clear the Air.
This science brief, written by oceanographers at the Pacific Marine Environmental Laboratory of NOAA and a biologist at the California State University San Marcos, covers ocean chemistry, pH, and ocean acidification in a simple and straightforward manner. It notes that OA can be predicted with a high degree of certainty, and that we play a major role in OA through carbon dioxide emissions.
Gattuso, J.-P. Ocean Acidification. Villefranche-sur-mer Developmental Biological Laboratory.
This article provides a basic background of the chemistry, pH scale, name, history, and impacts of OA.
Harrould-Kolieb, E., M. Hirshfield, & A. Brosius. (2009). Major Emitters Among Hardest Hit by Ocean Acidification. Oceana.
This analysis evaluates the likely vulnerability and impact of OA on different countries around the world based on the magnitude of their fish and shellfish catch, their level of seafood consumption, the percentage of coral reefs within their EEZ, and the projected level of OA in their coastal waters in 2050. The report notes that nations with large coral reef areas, or catch and consume large amounts of fish and shellfish, and those located at higher latitudes are most vulnerable to OA.
Kelly, R. P. & M. R. Caldwell. (2013). Ten Ways States Can Combat Ocean Acidification (and Why They Should). Selected Works.
This article provides a toolbox for understanding and addressing the drivers of OA, starting with an overview of the science behind ocean acidification, and noting the legal authority of states to address many of the causes of OA.
Mease, L. and M. Caldwell. (2014). Ocean Acidification: California MPA Threats Assessment: Legal and Policy Gap Analysis. Center for Ocean Solutions.
This white paper outlines the legal and policy options for addressing and mitigating the impacts of OA in California.
NOAA Agencies Addressing Issue of Ocean Acidification in Local Waters. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
This report provides a brief “Ocean Chemistry 101” lesson on OA chemical reactions and the pH scale. It also lists NOAA’s general ocean acidification concerns.
NOAA Climate Science & Services. The Vital Role of Earth Observations in Understanding Changing Ocean Chemistry.
This report outlines NOAA’s Integrated Ocean Observing System (IOOS) effort aimed at characterizing, predicting and monitoring coastal, ocean and Great Lake environments.
Ocean Acidification and Hypoxia: Envisioning a Future Science Landscape. California Ocean Science Trust, Oakland, California, USA. February 2015
This report provides a vision of the future landscape of the ocean that reflects ways in which the scientific community can approach ocean acidification and hypoxia in the years to come. Panelists and additional experts sought to answer the following three questions: what will we need to know 5, 10, 20 years from now to effectively address ocean acidification and hypoxia?; what will we do differently as a result of that knowledge?; and how should scientists, industry members, and stakeholders work together in new ways to address these challenges?
Ocean Acidification and the Southern Ocean. (2010). Antarctic and Southern Ocean Coalition. Washington, D.C.
This report covers OA threats to the Southern Ocean, where OA will have its greatest initial impacts due to the relative undersaturation of CaCO3. ASOC calls for CCAMLR Members to develop research programs to fill in the gaps of current research on Southern Ocean OA impacts as soon as possible.
This meeting report covers workshop goals and structure, outcomes, and follow-up activities.
Pew Center on Global Climate Change (2009). The Science and Consequences of Ocean Acidification. Arlington, VA.
This brief describes the changes in the chemistry of the world’s oceans and explores the potential implications for marine ecosystems and the global food supply. The real-time data collection of the IOOS program acts as an early warning system for shellfish hatcheries, signaling the approach of cold, acidified seawater 1 to 2 days prior, significantly aiding hatchery management.
Review of the Federal Ocean Acidification Research and Monitoring Plan. (2013). Washington, DC: The National Academies Press.
This report covers OA in the context of policy and outlines the context and comprehensiveness of the Interagency Working Group on Ocean Acidification (IWGOA) Strategic Plan.
Salvat, B., & Allemand, D. (2009). Acidification and Coral Reefs (pp. 1-32). Coral Reef Initiatives for the Pacific.
This tri-lingual report (English, French, and Spanish) written by the Initiative for the Protection and Management of Coral Reefs in the Pacific (CRISP) outlines general OA principles and the impact of OA on marine organisms, specifically focusing on coral reef ecosystems. The report calls for more research to determine the effects of increasing seawater acidification on more coral species, specifically through physiological studies on corals and their symbiotic zooxanthellae to establish the potential adaptability of some species.
Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity (2009). Scientific Synthesis of the Impacts of Ocean Acidification on Marine Biodiversity. Montreal, Technical Series No. 46, 61 pages.
This technical report provides a broad background of ocean acidification, carbon emissions, and climate change. It calls for urgent and rapid reduction of global emissions, and the recognition and integration of OA in the global climate change debate.
Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity (2014). An Updated Synthesis of the Impacts of Ocean Acidification on Marine Biodiversity (Eds: S. Hennige, J.M. Roberts & P. Williamson). Montreal, Technical Series No. 75, 99 pages.
This comprehensive and technical report introduces OA and an awareness of its consequences, as well as the global status and future trends of OA. It covers a range of OA impacts, from physiological and biogeochemical responses to impacts on both benthic and pelagic communities. It concludes with an examination of the uncertainties surrounding OA and future research requirements.
United States Government Accountability Office. (2014). Ocean Acidification: Federal Response Under Way, but Actions Needed to Understand and Address Potential Impacts (GAO Publication No. 14-736). Washington, D.C.: U.S. Government Printing Office.
This GOA report found that there are a variety of potentially significant effects of OA on marine species, ecosystems, and coastal communities. The GOA notes that scientific understanding is still developing, and some uncertainty exists in the scope and severity of the impacts of OA.
Campbell, A. et al. Ocean acidification changes the male fitness landscape. Scientific Reports 6, Article number: 31250 (2016)
Study that shows ocean acidifcation can have a negative impact on the sperm performance of a species of sea urchin.
Celis-Plá P, Hall-Spencer JM, Horta P, Milazzo M, Korbee N, Cornwall CE and Figueroa FL (2015). Macroalgal responses to ocean acidification depend on nutrient and light levels. Front. Mar. Sci. 2:26. doi: 10.3389/fmars.2015.00026
Ocean acidification may benefit algae that are able to capitalise on increased carbon availability for photosynthesis but is expected to have adverse effects on calcified algae through dissolution. Shifts in dominance between primary producers will have knock-on effects on marine ecosystems and will likely vary regionally, depending on factors such as irradiance (light vs shade) and nutrient levels (oligotrophic vs eutrophic). The findings from this study strengthen evidence that brown algae can be expected to proliferate as the oceans acidify where physicochemical conditions, such as nutrient levels and light, permit.
Chan, K.Y.K., Grunbaum, D., Arnberg, M., and S. Dupont (2015). Impacts of ocean acidification on survival, growth, and swimming behaviors differ between larval urchins and brittlestarts. ICES Journal of Marine Science doi: 10.1093/icesjms/fsv073
This article compares the developmental dynamics, survivorship, and swimming behaviors of two ecologically important echinoderm species that naturally experience variability in ambient pH: the purple urchin and the infaunal brittlestar. Sensitivity to decreased pH differed between these species.
Ekstrom, J.A. et al. (2015). Vulnerability and adaptation of US shellfisheries to ocean acidification. Nature. 5, 207-215, doi: 10.1038/nclimate2508
Feasible and locally relevant mitigation and adaptation measure are needed to deal with OA impacts. This article presents spatially explicit vulnerability analysis of coastal communities in the US.
Harrould-Kolieb E.R., Herr D. (2011) Ocean acidification and climate change: synergies and challenges of addressing both under the UNFCCC. Climate Policy. 1-12. doi:10.1080/14693062.2012.620788
This article identifies linkages between ocean acidification, climate change, and the UN’s Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and offers possible scenarios for developing common solutions to reduce and adapt to ocean acidification and climate change.
Mathis, J.T., J.N. Cross, W. Evans, and S.C. Doney. 2015. Ocean acidification in the surface waters of the Pacific-Arctic boundary regions. Oceanography 28(2):122-135, http://dx.doi.org/10.5670/oceanog.2015.36.
In the Pacific-Arctic region, enhanced sea ice melt, respiration of organic matter, upwelling, and rivierine inputs have been shown to exacerbate ocean acidification. In addition, changing sea ice coverage is indirectly providing a positive feedback to OA as more open water allows for greater uptake of atmospheric carbon dioxide. These cumulative impacts also affect the carbonate mineral saturation states for aragonite, a proxy this study uses to define benchmark years when biological impacts are likely to result from reduced aragonite saturation states.
This easily digestible article explains the background behind OA and highlights recent OA research.
Spalding, M. J. (2015). Crisis for Sherman’s Lagoon – And the Global Ocean. The Environmental Forum. 32(2), 38-43.
This report highlights the severity of OA, its impact on the food web and on human sources of protein, and the fact that it is not just a growing threat but a present and visible problem. The article discusses U.S. state action as well as the international response to OA, and ends with a list of small steps that can and should be taken to help combat OA.
Talmage, S. C. & C. J. Gobler. (2010). Effects of past, present, and future ocean carbon dioxide concentrations on the growth and survival of larval shellfish. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 107(40), 17246-17251. doi: 10.1073/pnas.0913804107
This journal article presents experiments that examined the effects of the ocean’s past, present, and future CO2 concentrations on the growth, survival, and condition of larvae of two species of commercially and ecologically valuable bivalve shellfish, the quahog and the bay scallop. Results suggest that the OA that has occurred during the past two centuries may be inhibiting the development and survival of larval shellfish and contributing to the global decline of some bivalve populations.
Hurd, C., Lenton, A., Tilbrook, B. & Boyd, P. (2018). Current understanding and challenges for oceans in a higher-CO2 world. Nature. Retrieved from https://www.nature.com/articles/s41558-018-0211-0
Although ocean acidification is a global phenomenon, recognition of significant regional variability has led to the establishment of observation networks. Future challenges in a higher-CO2 world include better design and rigorous testing of adaptation, mitigation, and intervention options to offset the effects of ocean acidification.
Clarkson, M. O. et al. (2015). Ocean acidification and the Permo-Triassic mass extinction. Science Magazine. 348, 229-232, doi:10.1126/science.aaa0193
This article explores the possibility that ocean acidification, triggered by Siberian Trap volcanism, contributed to the Permo-Triassic Boundary mass extinction. Evidence for an acidification event is lacking, but this paper presents seawater pH records based on modeling and boron isotope data.
Coley, K. “Satellite Monitoring: ocean measurements from space.” (2015). Marine Technology Reporter. Web.
Recent advances in what ocean parameters can be monitored from space will change how marine and climate scientists study and monitor the ocean, including ocean acidification.
Gruber, N., C. Hauri, Z. Lachkar, D. Loher, T. L. Frolicher, & G. Plattner. “Rapid Progression of Ocean Acidification in the California Current System.” Science Express (2012). Web.
This report covers the nearshore waters of the California Current System and the potential development of ocean acidification in the system up to 2050 under two scenarios.
Hardt, M. J. & C. Safina. “How Ocean Acidification Threatens Oceans from the Inside Out.” Scientific American (2010). Web.
This article is about how carbon dioxide emissions are making the oceans more acidic, imperiling the growth and reproduction of species from plankton to squid.
Jewett, E. & M. Mataki. “Ocean acidification: State-of-the-science considerations for Small Island Developing States.” Outreach (2014). Web.
This article covers the two-day International Workshop on Ocean Acidification: State-of-the-Science Considerations for SIDS, held in Samoa in August 2014. The workshop fostered the creation of OA networks for the Caribbean, Pacific Islands, and SIDS regions.
Kelly, R. P., M. M. Foley, W. S. Fisher, R.A. Feely, B.S. Halpern, G. G. Waldbusser, & M. R. Caldwell. “Mitigating Local Causes of Ocean Acidification with Existing Laws.” Science Magazine (2011). Web.
This article discusses “hot spots” of ocean acidification caused by non-atmospheric inputs like pollutants and soil erosion. A multi-layered approach of federal and state laws and local ordinances is encouraged to combat localized ocean acidification.
Kintisch, E. “‘Sea Butterflies’ Are a Canary for Ocean Acidification.” Science Magazine (2014). Web.
This article highlights how OA is dissolving the shells of tiny sea snails in the U.S. Pacific coast. Scientists note that at least half of the damage to the shells appears to be linked to human-caused emissions. The article reports that the California Current is known as an OA hotspot, and cites pteropods as an early indicator for the serious impacts of OA.
Slezak, Michael. “Not just a pretty face: In the battle against climate change, corals have a few tricks up their sleeve.” New Scientist (2015). Web.
This journal article questions the original assumptions of many scientists regarding the resiliency of coral species. Slezak postulates that corals may be more resilient than previously thought, but notes that resiliency changes by species, range, and other biological factors.
Hawthorne, John. “The Oceans Are Getting More Acidic…Here’s What You Need To Know.” Mo Box (2017). Web.
This article outlines ocean acidification and shares general knowledge on the topic. What does the public need to know? What is OA? What causes OA? These are some broad questions that the author discusses and answers.
Eisler, R. (2012). Ocean Acidification: A Comprehensive Overview. Enfield, NH: Science Publishers.
This book reviews the available literature and research on OA, including a historical overview of pH and atmospheric CO2 levels and natural and anthropogenic sources of CO2. The authority is a noted authority on chemical risk assessment, and the book summarizes real and projected effects of oceanic acidification.
Gattuso, J.-P. & L. Hansson. (2011). Ocean Acidification. Spain: Oxford University Press.
This book is a research level text and it synthesizes up-to-date research on the likely consequences of OA, with the goal of informing both future research priorities and marine management policy.
Gattuso, J.-P., J. Orr, S. Pantoja. H.-O. Portner, U. Riebesell, & T. Trull (Eds.). (2009). The ocean in a high-CO2 world II. Gottingen, Germany: Copernicus Publications.
This special issue of Biogeosciences includes over 20 scientific articles on ocean chemistry and the impact of OA on marine ecosystems.
National Research Council (2010) Ocean Acidification: A National Strategy to Meet the Challenges of a Changing Ocean. Washington, D.C.: The National Academies Press.
This national strategy, complied by the National Research Council, summarizes the potential effects of ocean acidification on ocean ecosystems, the chemistry of seawater, and the physiology of marine life. It outlines some of the socio-economic concerns of OA, and the rationale behind the creation of an Ocean Acidification Program.
Raisman, S. & D. T. Murphy (2013). Ocean Acidification: Elements and Considerations. New York: Nova Science Publishers, Inc.
This book examines potential legislative action by Congress related to authorizing, coordinating, and funding research to increase knowledge and understanding about OA and its potential impact on marine ecosystems.
Cooley, S., Mathis, J., Yates, K, & Turley, C. eds. Frequently Asked Questions about Ocean Acidification. U.S. Ocean Carbon and Biogeochemistry Program and the UK Ocean Acidification Research Programme. Version 2. 24 September 2012.
This updated and expanded FAQ list expands upon a list develop in 2010 by OCB, the European Project on Ocean Acidification, and UKOA. It was created based on up-to-date information from 63 scientists from 47 institutions and 12 countries.
Making it clear: A fresh look at the global problem of ocean acidification for those people who want to know a little more. (2010). OA International Reference User Group (OA-iRUG).
This guide does four things: answers key questions about OA, explains the degree of certainty of the international scientific community on what is already happening in the ocean, discusses what the future may hold for the ocean in a high carbon dioxide world, and explores the consequences for all of us from what is now happening.
Fosså, J. H., R. Bellerby, & R. Jakobsen. Consequences of Ocean Acidification for Fisheries. Institute of Marine Research and the Bjerknes Center for Climate Research. Bergen, Norway.
This presentation details the distribution of globally important fish stocks in relation to OA, how fish stocks are regulated, the impact of OA on fish stocks, lessons learned from collapsed fish stocks, the role of fishery management, and two case studies on the Atlantic herring food web and fish habitat degradation.
Turley, C. Ocean Acidification. (2012). Plymouth Marine Laboratory.
Dr. Turley’s presentation presents evidence of OA’s impact on invertebrates, food chain vulnerability, OA hotspots, and the impact that future CO2 emissions could have on marine organisms and ecosystems
Congressional Research Service (CRS) Reports
Buck, E. H. & P. Folger. (2009). Ocean Acidification (CRS Report No. R40143). Washington, D.C.: Congressional Research Service.
Contents include basic OA facts, the rate at which OA is occurring, potential effects of OA, natural and human responses that might limit or reduce OA, congressional interest in OA, and what the federal government is doing about OA.
Buck, E. H. & P. Folger. (2009). Ocean Acidification (CRS Report No. R40143). Washington, D.C.: Congressional Research Service.
Published in July, this CRS report is an updated version of the February 2009 report.
Upton, H. F. & P. Folger. (2013). Ocean Acidification (CRS Report No. R40143). Washington, D.C.: Congressional Research Service.
Published in July of 2013, this CRS report is an update to the previous CRS OA reports, and notes the only bill introduced in the 113th Congress (Coral Reef Conservation Act Amendments of 2013) which would include OA in the criteria used to evaluate project proposals for studying threats to coral reefs.
Ocean Acidification Curriculum Collection. 2015. The Suquamish Tribe.
This online resource is a curated collection of free resources on ocean acidification for educators and communicators, for grades K-12.
Spalding, M. J. (2014) Ocean Acidification and Food Security. University of California, Irvine: Ocean Health, Global Fishing, and Food Security conference presentation recording.
Mark Spalding presents on the relationship between OA and food security at a conference on ocean health, global fishing, and food security at UC Irivne.
IGBP, IOC, SCOR (2013). Ocean Acidification Summary for Policymakers – Third Symposium on the Ocean in a High-CO2 World. International Geosphere-Biosphere Programme, Stockholm, Sweden.
This summary is of the state of knowledge on ocean acidification based on research presented at the third symposium on the Ocean in a High-CO2 World in Monterey, CA in 2012.
InterAcademy Panel on International Issues. (2009). IAP Statement on Ocean Acidification.
This two-page statement, endorsed by over 60 academies globally, briefly outlines the threats posted by OA, and provides recommendations and a call to action.
Monaco Declaration on Ocean Acidification. (2008). Second International Symposium on the Ocean in a High-CO2 World.
Requested by Prince Albert II after the second international symposium in Monaco on OA, this declaration, based on irrefutable scientific findings and signed by 155 scientists from 26 nations, sets forth recommendations, calling for policymakers to address the immense problem of ocean acidification.
Actions You Can Take
Use our SeaGrass Grow Carbon Calculator to calculate your carbon emissions and donate to offset your impact! The calculator was developed by The Ocean Foundation to help an individual or organization calculate its annual CO2 emissions to, in turn, determine the amount of blue carbon necessary to offset them (acres of seagrass to be restored or the equivalent). The revenue from the blue carbon credit mechanism can be used to fund restoration efforts, which in turn generate more credits. Such programs allow for two wins: creation of a quantifiable cost to global systems of CO2-emitting activities and, second, restoration of seagrass meadows that form a critical component of coastal ecosystems and are in sore need of recovery.