Google Earth Tour - Ocean Acidification
Length: 8:40 minutes
See how carbon dioxide impacts ocean chemistry and learn why even small changes to ocean chemistry could have profound implications for marine life and future economic activities.
Learn more about ocean acidification from the NOAA .
To understand the changing chemistry of the oceans and the impacts of ocean acidification on marine ecosystems. Our observations of key physical, chemical, and biological parameters support NOAA's overall efforts to predict how marine ecosystems will respond and to develop management strategies for adapting to the consequences of ocean acidification.
ACTIVITY DESCRIPTION AND TEACHING MATERIALS
TEACHING NOTES / CONTEXT FOR USE
Fundamental changes in seawater chemistry are occurring throughout the world's oceans. Since the beginning of the industrial revolution, the release of carbon dioxide (CO2) from humankind's industrial and agricultural activities has increased the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere. The ocean absorbs about a quarter of the CO2 we release into the atmosphere every year, so as atmospheric CO2 levels increase, so do the levels in the ocean. Initially, many scientists focused on the benefits of the ocean removing this greenhouse gas from the atmosphere. However, decades of ocean observations now show that there is also a downside — the CO2 absorbed by the ocean is changing the chemistry of the seawater, a process called OCEAN ACIDIFICATION.
REFERENCES AND RESOURCES
(Courtesy of Jenifer Austin Foulkes, Owen Gaffney, Dan Laffoley).