CO2 emissions poses threat to Marine ecosystems



Scientists have warned that rising CO2 levels has altered the chemistry of the waters and are disrupting the natural balance of marine life.  Oceans are becoming warmer, losing oxygen and leading to ocean acidification.

Twenty-two world-leading marine scientists have suggested in a report that oceans are at parlous risk.  The increasing levels of CO2 from burning fossil fuels is changing the chemistry of the seas faster posing a threat to reproduction, larval survival and feeding, and growth rates of marine organisms.  They have warned against the irreversible changes to the earth system due to increased level of carbon.

Scientists have acknowledged the role of ocean as a regulator of climate and weather in addition to source of food, energy, minerals, drugs and half the oxygen in the atmosphere.  They have strongly suggested to policy makers to identify the potential concerns of these dramatic changes and raise the profile of the ocean in international talks.  Jean-Pierre Gattuso, lead author of the study, suggested that oceans have been under-represented at previous climate negotiations and expect a radical change at the UN conference (in Paris) on climate change.

They have warned that the oceans had absorbed nearly 30% of the carbon dioxide making the seawater more acidic.  Also, these oceans have buffered against climate change by absorbing over 90% of the additional heat.  The extra heat makes it harder for the ocean to hold oxygen.  They also emphasized that the 2C maximum temperature rise for climate change agreed by governments will not able to produce desired results.  They have a strong belief that politicians had given only a too little attention to the impacts of climate change on the oceans.

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