Monday, February 02, 2009

CO2 air pollution leads to dangerous acidity levels in the seas

The world's oceans do us the favor of pulling some CO2 out of the atmosphere, which keeps global warming somewhat in check (they absorb about 25 percent of emissions). But the oceans are absorbing so much CO2 these days that ocean acidity levels are reaching dangerous levels (absorbed CO2 becomes carbonic acid), and the ocean food chain is in jeopardy. This according to the recently published "Monaco Statement" by a panel of 155 scientists around the world (NY Times).

How serious is the problem? Well, let's see here. "Severe damages are imminent," said the team. And "urgent action" is advised. And in the end, "impacts on organisms appear unavoidable." In what way? "ocean acidification may render most regions chemically inhospitable to coral reefs by 2050.”

(photo by
Sam and Ian via Flickr)

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I started pound360 to channel my obsession with vitamins, running and the five senses. Eventually, I got bored focusing on all that stuff, so I came back from a one month hiatus in May of 2007 (one year after launching Pound360) and broadened my mumblings here to include all science.