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Ocean Acidification - Page 2

post #31 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by gerda:

its good mainstream papers are starting to recognise the problem. its all going just far too fast for the normal buffers to keep up, an extremely un-natural imbalance. i'm more worried about this than even the warming i think.

 

The natural buffer (although it isn't a buffer in the strict chemical sense) for increasing atmospheric CO2 is dissolution of limestone (and other calcium/magnesium carbonate) rocks.  Given enough time (say many thousands of years), the pH of the ocean will come back to around 8.3, which is the endpoint of a titration of calcium carbonate with carbonic acid.  However, it is fairly clear that ocean ecosystems are very sensitive to changes in pH, precisely because it is so stable.  The near constancy of ocean pH means organisms evolved no mechanisms to deal with changes in pH and the proteins in their membranes denature and calcium carbonate solubility becomes too high for them to form shells. 

 

The marine biologists who know about this have been talking about it for years and nobody paid much attention to them until Sabine and Feeley demonstrated ocean pH had decreased. 

post #32 of 33

This info has been around, as you say, for around 5 years.  Doctors Caldeira and Wickett from LLNL were among the first to point out the problem in a Nature paper in 2003:

 

 

https://publicaffairs.llnl.gov/news/news_releases/2003/NR-03-09-07.html

http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v437/n7059/full/nature04095.html

 

So the good news is, that when the media is looking for quotes and information, there's a number of authorities they can turn to in researching the articles now being written.  Better late than never?  In the long term, losing 5 years on this isn't really going to matter.  The awareness is there now, and the media is finally doing its job and informing the public.

post #33 of 33
Thread Starter 

Ocean acidification is killing the Great Barrier Reef
mongabay.com
January 01, 2009

 

well, the eutrophication and overfishing arent helping, but they are starting to adress those. could all be in vain....

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