World leading Australian marine scientists feature in new online education resources

June 21, 2011 by Ocean Ark Alliance

Categorised in News, Resources, Science

What is ocean acidification?

What causes ocean acidification?

How does ocean acidification impact on coral reefs?

Are today’s conditions very different from the past?

Can we predict how ocean acidification will impact on coral reefs in the future?

World leading Australian marine scientists Professor Ove Hoegh-Guldberg and Professor Peter Harrison answer these and many other questions about corals reefs in two new series of educational video presentations both hosted by Dr ‘Kiki’ Sanford.

Created in collaboration with Education Services Australia, The Learning Federation, Specialty Studios and Plankton Productions, a total of nine insightful video modules with support materials aligned with curriculum standards for education in science are now available.

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Projected acidification and warming threaten key ocean species

April 4, 2011 by Ocean Ark Alliance

Categorised in News, Science

Marine abalone and sea urchins will not develop skeletons if the ocean continues to warm and acidify as predicted, according to current research lead by the University of Sydney’s Schools of Medical Sciences and Biological Sciences, at environmentally significant Little Bay, near Sydney.

When exposed to the increased acidity and temperature levels projected 100 years from now they produced deformed specimens, without shells or spines. This means key sources of protein will be lost due to future changes in our oceans.

A 5-day-old sea urchin reared in today's ocean conditions compared to one reared in high temperature and low pH

“We wondered about the impact of climate change on shelled marine animals since ocean acidification reduces the amount of carbonate ions, which they need to make their calcium carbonate skeletons,” says Professor Maria Byrne, from University of Sydney’s Schools of Biological Science and Medical Sciences.

Lead author Prof. Byrne and her team investigate how the simultaneous increase in acidity and temperature affect development from fertilised egg to juvenile stages of sea urchins and abalone, a first for any study.

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David Attenborough covers reef threat

September 6, 2010 by Ocean Ark Alliance

Categorised in Media, News, Science

“The ocean is … a chemical reactor. CO2 goes into the ocean.  It is fixed by plants or deposited as calcium carbonate, and through the very large scale circulations of water around the planet it is essentially processing the atmosphere and keeping the planet habitable.” Professor Ove Hoegh-Guldberg, Global Change Institute Director, University of Queensland, from the David Attenborough documentary “Death of the Oceans”.

A world-leading experiment on Heron Island, done in collaboration between labs at UQ, Stanford University and the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute, will chemically alter the carbon dioxide absorbed in the ocean water directly on a living intact coral reef. This experiment aims to simulate insitu reactions to the amounts of CO2 likely to be present over the next few decades. So ground breaking is this current research that it caught the eye of Sir David Attenborough when producing his latest documentary, Death of the Oceans.

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European Project on Ocean Acidification given 4 year green light

June 19, 2008 by Ocean Ark Alliance

Categorised in News, Science

The overall goal of the EPOCA consortium is to advance understanding of the biological, ecological, biogeochemical, and societal implications of ocean acidification.

It brings together more than 100 researchers from 29 institutes and 10 European countries (Belgium, France, Germany, Iceland, Italy, The Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland, United Kingdom).

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Changing Ocean Chemistry Dissolves Corals

July 5, 2006 by Ocean Ark Alliance

Categorised in News, Science

News that increasing carbon dioxide pollution reduces the ability of coral reefs to grow reached notoriety with this landmark report. It is a result of a workshop in St. Petersburg, Florida involving peak research bodies NSF, NOAA and USGS.

Lead by Dr Joan Kleypas, a scientist at the National Center for Atmospheric Research, they outlined the sensitivity of ocean chemistry and the implications of Ocean Acidification.

What conclusion did their landmark work – Impacts of Ocean Acidification on Coral Reefs and Other Marine Calcifiers – reach?

We need to know more, a lot more.

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Ocean Acidification - The other CO2 Challenge