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Building Capacity for Ocean Acidification in the Caribbean


There is a significant need to strengthen capacity for research, monitoring, and adaptive solutions for ocean acidification resilience and associated multi-stressors in the Caribbean region. The Caribbean Ocean Acidification Community of Practice (CoP) endeavors to explore the impacts of ocean acidification on important ocean and coastal areas, such as coral reefs, ecosystem and human health, and socio-economic activities within the region. Other efforts by NOAA and partners in the region are to stand up a Caribbean Coastal Acidification Network (CAN) and create a GOA-ON Hub. 

To determine the needs of the local communities, the CoP is working with The Ocean Foundation to facilitate a Needs Based Assessment Survey. The goal of the survey is to better inform policymakers and funding agencies in the region about OA and identify pathways for long-standing community structures such as a Coastal Acidification Network and GOA-ON Hub. This survey also helps self-identify leaders within the communities to carry these efforts forward. The survey will be open until April 21, 2023. The CoP aims to report on survey results via email and at local conferences (i.e. AMLC Meeting in St. Kitts May 22-26, 2023). If you have any questions about the survey, please contact Alexis Valauri-Orton (

History of the Community of Practice 

The creation of the CoP follows the UNESCO Intergovernmental Oceanographic Committee Assembly in summer 2021 and the accepted Sub-Commission for the Caribbean and Adjacent Regions (IOCARIBE) Decision.

The CoP’s effort will contribute to the UN Decade for Ocean Science for Sustainable Development, and UN Sustainable Development Goal Target 14.3 (“Minimize and address the impacts of ocean acidification, including through enhanced scientific cooperation at all levels”). This community will also help tie together various intergovernmental bodies, academics, researchers, and administrators around the challenges of the global scale problem of OA and the impacts on small island’s local marine resources, economies, and ecosystem health. 

Currently the CoP consists of a core task team of members from the USA (i.e. NOAA Ocean Acidification Program, NOAA’s OAR International Activities Office and The Ocean Foundation) and the Caribbean (i.e. University Partners, Government Representatives, Non-profit/NGOs).

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The NOAA Ocean Acidification Program (OAP) works to prepare society to adapt to the consequences of ocean acidification and conserve marine ecosystems as acidification occurs. Learn more about the human connections and adaptation strategies from these efforts.

Adaptation approaches fostered by the OAP include:


Using models and research to understand the sensitivity of organisms and ecosystems to ocean acidification to make predictions about the future, allowing communities and industries to prepare


Using these models and predictions as tools to facilitate management strategies that will protect marine resources and communities from future changes


Developing innovative tools to help monitor ocean acidification and mitigate changing ocean chemistry locally


On the Road

Drive fuel-efficient vehicles or choose public transportation. Choose your bike or walk! Don't sit idle for more than 30 seconds. Keep your tires properly inflated.

With your Food Choices

Eat local- this helps cut down on production and transport! Reduce your meat and dairy. Compost to avoid food waste ending up in the landfill

With your Food Choices

Make energy-efficient choices for your appliances and lighting. Heat and cool efficiently! Change your air filters and program your thermostat, seal and insulate your home, and support clean energy sources

By Reducing Coastal Acidification

Reduce your use of fertilizers, Improve sewage treatment and run off, and Protect and restore coastal habitats

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You've taken the first step to learn more about ocean acidification - why not spread this knowledge to your community?

Every community has their unique culture, economy and ecology and what’s at stake from ocean acidification may be different depending on where you live.  As a community member, you can take a larger role in educating the public about ocean acidification. Creating awareness is the first step to taking action.  As communities gain traction, neighboring regions that share marine resources can build larger coalitions to address ocean acidification.  Here are some ideas to get started:

  1. Work with informal educators, such as aquarium outreach programs and local non-profits, to teach the public about ocean acidification. Visit our Education & Outreach page to find the newest tools!
  2. Participate in habitat restoration efforts to restore habitats that help mitigate the effects of coastal acidification
  3. Facilitate conversations with local businesses that might be affected by ocean acidification, building a plan for the future.
  4. Partner with local community efforts to mitigate the driver behind ocean acidification  – excess CO2 – such as community supported agriculture, bike & car shares and other public transportation options.
  5. Contact your regional Coastal Acidification Network (CAN) to learn how OA is affecting your region and more ideas about how you can get involved in your community
       More for Taking Community Action