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Ocean Acidification

In addition to the famous impacts of atmospheric carbon on global warming, there is an equally worrisome effect of carbon dioxide on the oceans: ocean acidification (or OA for short). Here at I2SEA we have a series of resources about OA, including Our Acidifying Ocean, which is an introductory activity and virtual lab (note: now mobile compatible!).

A student suggested that we start a conversation topic about OA, and here it is! Have you heard about Ocean Acidification? If so, are you worried about it? How do you think we can best raise awareness about it among your fellow students and the general public? Have you seen particularly good links or films about OA that you would like to share? What are you doing to address the problem?

Ocean Acidification >

Overview of Ocean Acidification and its Impacts


The concentration of CO2 in the atmosphere has increased greatly since the Industrial Revolution due to human actions, and the surface ocean has had a 30% increase in acidity.
The ocean absorbs 30% of the CO2 found in the atmosphere, which has been increasing in recent years due to deforestation and fossil fuel use. Carbon dioxide dissolves into seawater and forms carbonic acid, making the ocean more acidic. Plants and animals are being greatly affected by this acidification, resulting in trophic cascades and the destruction of ecosystems. In addition, ocean plants are being negatively impacted by the acidic water and as a result, they are unable to decrease atmospheric CO2 through photosynthesis.

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