What is the chemical equation for ocean acidification?
The formation and dissolution of calcium carbonate depends on the saturation state (Ω) of water, or the ion product of calcium and carbonate concentrations. The solubility product in the equation, Ω = Ca2+ + CO3−2/K’sp, depends on temperature, salinity, pressure and the particular mineral.
What is acidification in the ocean?
Ocean acidification refers to a reduction in the pH of the ocean over an extended period of time, caused primarily by uptake of carbon dioxide (CO2) from the atmosphere.
What is ocean acidification and why is it a problem?
There is precious little time to waste, and the issue of ocean acidification highlights the urgency for action. Carbon dioxide (CO2) from burning fossil fuels is changing the fundamental chemistry of our oceans. If acidity gets high enough, ocean water becomes corrosive and shells literally dissolve.
What are the impacts of ocean acidification?
Ocean acidification reduces the amount of carbonate, a key building block in seawater. This makes it more difficult for marine organisms, such as coral and some plankton, to form their shells and skeletons, and existing shells may begin to dissolve.
Is the ocean acidic or basic?
Carbon dioxide and seawater The ocean’s average pH is now around 8.1 , which is basic (or alkaline), but as the ocean continues to absorb more CO2, the pH decreases and the ocean becomes more acidic.
How can we prevent ocean acidification?
The most effective way to limit ocean acidification is to act on climate change, implementing solutions to dramatically reduce the use of fossil fuels. If we dramatically cut our global warming emissions, and we limit future warming, we can significantly reduce the harm to marine ecosystems.
Is ocean acidification caused by humans?
The culprit behind the acidification is the extra carbon dioxide humans have caused to collect in the atmosphere by burning fossil fuels, cutting down forests, and other actions.
What are the main causes of ocean acidification?
Ocean acidification is mainly caused by carbon dioxide gas in the atmosphere dissolving into the ocean. This leads to a lowering of the water’s pH, making the ocean more acidic. Many factors contribute to rising carbon dioxide levels.
Can we reverse ocean acidification?
“Once the ocean is severely affected by high carbon dioxide, it is virtually impossible to undo these alterations on a human-generation timescale,” said Sabine Mathesius of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research in Potsdam, Germany.
When did ocean acidification become a problem?
Although scientists have been tracking ocean pH for more than 30 years, biological studies really only started in 2003, when the rapid shift caught their attention and the term “ocean acidification” was first coined .
What does ocean acidification do to marine life?
Ocean acidification can negatively affect marine life, causing organisms’ shells and skeletons made from calcium carbonate to dissolve. Animals that produce calcium carbonate structures have to spend extra energy either repairing their damaged shells or thickening them to survive.
How does ocean acidification affect the economy?
If ocean acidification significantly damages marine habitats, alters marine resource availability, and disrupts ecosystem services, then direct economic costs may occur in addition to indirect impacts, such as potential job losses through declining harvest and fishery revenues from shellfish and their exploited