MANAGEMENT STRATEGIES 

Management strategies use information provided by research and tools that can be used to make sound decisions to effectively conserve marine resources.  Baseline research about organism and community sensitivity to ocean acidification is incorporated into these strategies, in an effort to sustain these resources for the future.

Research

Before management plans can be created it is necessary to have baseline research about the effects of ocean acidification on marine resources, such as Pacific oysters, dungeness crabs and rockfish. The OAP funds NOAA Fisheries Science Centers to expose various life stages of valuable species to present and future acidification conditions. The results of this research have already been considered in management of vulnerable king crab species.  In addition, research is underway to establish baseline measures of chemistry surrounding coral reefs that can be used to evaluate the potential risk of changing ocean chemistry to these valuable ecosystems.   

Management Tools

After models are created that provide a look into the future, these models can be used to create tools for managers to use so that they can test different scenarios on species’ populations and habitats.  Modeling efforts led by Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution are now being used to produce one of these tools for Atlantic sea scallop fisheries. The dashboard will allow managers to test the impacts of different management actions on scallop populations.  In the Pacific Northwest, NOAA, the University of Washington, and shellfish industry scientists have formed a strong partnership to adapt to ocean acidification impacts that have already affected the shellfish industry. Together these researchers determined that acidification was threatening oyster production and offered an approach to address it. They installed equipment to monitor carbon chemistry at shellfish hatcheries and worked with hatchery managers to develop methods that protect developing oyster larvae from exposure to low pH waters.   Early warning tools are now being used to forecast seasonal acidification conditions to enable shellfish growers to adapt their practices.

 

STORIES OF ADAPTATION

Oceans fail the acid test as carbon emissions rise

Oceans fail the acid test as carbon emissions rise

BY: GEOFFREY LEAN, Science

It is the little mentioned flip side of global warming – the acidification of the world’s oceans. Now new research shows that, as predicted, it is harming sea life.

Even if climate change were not taking place, the process provides compelling cause for reducing emissions of carbon dioxide, for they are powering what scientists believe to be the most profound change in the chemistry of the oceans in millions of years. And its effects cannot be reversed in less than tens of millennia.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012
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CO2 dangerously acidifying world's oceans

CO2 dangerously acidifying world's oceans

Oceans are sucking up increased carbon emissions, raising fears acidification could lead to marine life extinctions BY: JILLIAN KESTLER DAMOURS, Aljazeera

As the effects of global climate change continue to be felt throughout the world's ecosystems, scientists say greenhouse gases are causing rapid changes that may irreversibly alter the composition of the Earth's oceans. It is estimated oceans absorb up to 30 percent of global carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions, helping to offset the overall warming of the planet. But the amount of CO2 being pumped into the atmosphere since the Industrial Revolution has skyrocketed, saturating oceans and boosting acidification. Burgeoning ocean acidification raises the spectre of extinctions of coral, algae and shellfish - key cogs in the global food chain - with far reaching consequences for the planet's inhabitants.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012
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Ocean Acidification: It's Time to Act

Ocean Acidification: It's Time to Act

BY: GEORGE LEONARD, National Geographic

Consensus is hard. Any time you bring together a range of interests, it’s rare the group can speak in a unified voice and recommend a clear path forward. But that’s exactly what happened yesterday in Washington by its Governor and the state’s Blue Ribbon Panel (BRP) on Ocean Acidification. The panel made clear that options exist for tackling ocean acidification. Coastal states and businesses that are dependent upon a healthy ocean now have a road map for action, thanks to Washington’s leadership – and oyster growers in Oregon first sounding the alarm. Ocean acidification is happening now, and we can and should take action.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012
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The Impact- Environmental and financial impacts of ocean acidification on the shellfish industry

a video, TVW

Host Anita Kissee visits a shellfish farm to see the environmental and financial impacts of ocean acidification on the industry. Plus, an update on the whooping cough epidemic.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012
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Rising ocean acidity off Washington state threatens shellfish, panel says

Rising ocean acidity off Washington state threatens shellfish, panel says

BY: The Associated Press

SEATTLE -- Rising acidity levels in the oceans pose a serious threat to shellfish and other marine life, and tackling that problem in Washington state will require reducing carbon dioxide emissions, keeping polluted runoff out of marine waters, and increasing monitoring at hatcheries, a group of experts recommended Tuesday.

The panel of scientists and policy experts convened by Gov. Chris Gregoire recommended dozens of actions to combat changes to ocean chemistry detected several years ago when oyster larvae in Pacific Northwest hatcheries began dying in large numbers.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012
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