Acid Oceans: The Gravest and Most Immediate Planetary Threat Yet?

Ocean acidification may present one of the gravest threats to our planet’s ecosystems and yet it is also one of the least publicized aspects of the global climate change issue. Acidification is occurring very rapidly, causing unprecedented changes to the chemistry of the oceans. It’s been estimated that roughly half of human-produced CO2 emissions over the past two centuries (since the beginning of the industrial age) have been absorbed by the oceans, leading to a drop in ocean surface pH of nearly 0.1 units (on the logarithmic pH scale).

Coral Reef in Timor (Photo courtesy of Nick Hobgood)

Coral Reef in Timor (Photo courtesy of Nick Hobgood)

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