Ocean Acidification

Ocean Acidification

Introduction

Definition of Ocean Acidification

Ocean Acidification (OA) is a term used to describe significant changes to the chemistry of the ocean.

It occurs when carbon dioxide gas (or CO2) is absorbed by the ocean and reacts with seawater to produce acid. Although CO2 gas naturally moves between the atmosphere and the oceans, the increased amounts of CO2 gas emitted into the atmosphere, mainly as a result of human activities (e.g. burning fossil fuels), has been increasing the amount of CO2 absorbed by the ocean, which results in seawater that is more acidic. 

The pH Scale

REDUCTION IN CARBONATE SUPPLY

FUTURE OCEAN pH

Video Features OA Monitoring Partnership

The New York Times, as part of the "California Matters" series, posted a video exploring our science-industry partnership to monitor ocean acidification and water quality in Tomales Bay.  The video follows host Mark Bitmann as he visits with Tessa Hill (UC Davis) and Hog Island Oyster Company co-owner Terry Sawyer to discuss ocean observing assets deployed at the oyster farm.  These instruments are being used to track water conditions that are important to both research science and the shellfish companies in the area.

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