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Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute

Plankton bloom seen from space. Credit: NASA

Multiscale observing system simulation experiments for iron fertilization in the Southern Ocean, Equatorial Pacific, and Northeast Pacific

Why we care Iron is a critical limiting nutrient for phytoplankton in the ocean. Iron fertilization adds this limiting nutrient to promote phytoplankton blooms as a way to take up carbon dioxide and store carbon when they sink. Unknowns on the effectiveness, measurement and monitoring need to be addressed. To address these unknowns, this project […]

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Coastal marsh at sunrise. Credit: Georgia Department of Natural Resources

Tidal wetlands as a low pH environment for accelerated and scalable olivine dissolution

Why we care Enhanced weathering is a carbon capture technology that increases ocean alkalinity by adding rocks with ultrabasic minerals, particularly in ecosystems like wetlands and mangroves. This project examines the safety, efficacy, and potential for large-scale implementation of enhanced weathering in tidal wetlands to enhance weathering as a method of carbon dioxide removal and

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Phytoplankton, most likely coccolithophors, in the Atlantic on 15 Feb 2006. Credit: NASA

Assessing the laboratory and field responses of diatoms and coccolithophores to ocean alkalinity enhancement

Why we care Ocean alkalinity enhancement relies on modifying the acid-base properties of seawater to remove carbon dioxide, however the effect of this strategy on primary productivity, cell physiology, and carbon export remain unknown. These impacts are not only potential ecosystem effects, but may influence the efficiency of carbon dioxide removal. This research focuses on

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Gliders can sample ocean conditions and track impacts of ocean alkalinity enhancement methods. Credit: NOAA AOML

Assessing Carbon Dioxide Removal and Ecosystem Response for an Ocean Alkalinity Enhancement Field Trial

Why we care Tracking how ocean alkalinity enhancement reduces acidity, resulting in carbon dioxide removal from the atmosphere is important for knowing how, where and when to deploy this approach as well as its potential impacts to marine life. Capitalizing on an ocean alkalinization field trial in the Gulf of Maine already underway, this project

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Alaska salmon troller Bay of Pillars in Chatham Strait. Credit: NOAA Fisheries

Assessing risks of ocean acidification in south-central and southeast Alaska

Evaluating ocean acidification vulnerability and interactions among traditional and coastal Alaska industries
Why we care
Many marine species affected by ocean acidification (OA) contribute to Alaska’s highly productive commercial fisheries and traditional subsistence ways of life. Concern exists that acidification will cause ecosystem-level shifts, diminishing the overall economic value of commercial fisheries and reducing food security for communities relying on subsistence harvests. 
What we are doing
This project addresses acidification threats in south-central and southeast Alaska. It involves the development of decision support tools incorporating acidification risks into localized socio-ecological systems. The tools are based on a network of models representing acidification hazards, bio-ecological systems, and socioeconomic systems linked to adaptive actions.
Benefits of our work
This project is an exchange of knowledge between scientists, policy makers, and community stakeholders. The network of models creates decision support tools responsive to stakeholder concerns that reflect regional variation in community priorities and their ecological social and management context. The project synthesizes the best available science to determine the risks posed by ocean acidification.

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ADAPTING TO OCEAN ACIDIFICATION

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:

FORECASTING

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

MANAGEMENT

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

TECHNOLOGY DEVELOPMENT

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

REDUCING OUR CARBON FOOTPRINT

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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TAKE ACTION WITH YOUR COMMUNITY

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