In some areas of ocean acidification has reached the level predicted by the end of the century

Coral reefs suffer perhaps more than anyone else. (Photo by Ruth D. Gates, Peter J. Edmunds.)

December 23. 19 experts from five research organizations have conducted extensive field studies of ocean acidification with sensors developed in Scripps Institution of Oceanography (USA).

An important step to understanding the response of specific ecosystems to changes in seawater chemistry due to the fact that the oceans absorb more carbon dioxide.

Ocean acidification — the theme is fairly new. Possible to estimate the extent of the problem only in the last decade. It is believed that the ocean absorbs about one-third of carbon dioxide produced by man and his machines. Since we are intensifying, the natural level of carbon dioxide in the water for a long time been overcome.

The most important consequence — reducing the concentration of carbonate forms that are needed marine invertebrates (corals, goad) to form skeletons. This effect was repeatedly simulated in the laboratory, but field work is not enough. So the scientists 'body kit' sensors 15 regions — from coral reefs in the South Pacific Ocean to the Mediterranean sea hydrothermal vents.

It was found that in some places (for example, in the Antarctic and the Pacific near the Line Islands), the range of variation of pH values are much smaller than, say, in those areas of the coast of California, where the vertical movement of water (upwelling). In some areas, the decrease in pH caused by emissions of greenhouse gases, is still in the range of natural fluctuations, and other areas have come to such a level of acidity, which predicted only at the end of the century.

In short, the differences are huge. It is clear that the assessment of the impact of ocean acidification on ecosystems — an extremely serious problem.

The researchers note that the level of acidification tall in some areas — it is even good, because the organisms have a chance to begin to adapt to what Sunabout other areas will experience in a hundred years. Prior to that, experts sounded the alarm, saying that acidification occurs too quickly.

The researchers used sensors and SeaFET SeapHOx, developed by a group Todd Martz. They are capable of measuring the pH and the temperature in the upper 70 m of the ocean. Since 2009, scientists have created 52 such instrument. With these remote ecosystems studied for 13 research groups. Since the data of all projects accumulated at Mr. Martz, he came to the conclusion that it's time to synthesize measurement.

The study is published in the journal PLoS ONE.

Based on: Scripps Institution of Oceanography
Source: Kompyulenta

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