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Laura Ramajo (Chile), COP20, Lima, December 2014

"I was able to participate in the exhibition stand under the slogan HOT, SOUR AND BREATHLESS sponsored by the Plymouth Marine Lab (UK), the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), Scripps Institution of Oceanography and CMBC (USA), and Centro de Investigación e Innovación para el Cambio Climático (CIICC) of Universidad Santo Tomás (Chile). Delegates and observers from around the world heard about how the increase in atmospheric CO2 is warming, acidifying and de-oxygenating the oceans with the respective ecologic, social and economic consequences."

Abed El Rahman HASSOUN (Lebanon), SOLAS Summer School 2013

"OA-ICC [...] provided for me the opportunity to present my research work to the international ocean research community, to meet experts and colleagues from all over the world and discuss with them about my results, share ideas and build a strong network with peers for future scientific collaborations."

Since the beginning of the industrial revolution, the ocean has absorbed about one third of the carbon dioxide (CO2) released by human activities. This results in ocean acidification, often referred to as "the other CO2 problem", alongside global warming.

Ocean acidification is a change in sea water chemistry; CO2 reacts with water molecules (H2O) and forms the weak acid H2CO3 (carbonic acid). It is estimated that if CO2 continues to be released at the same rate as today, ocean acidity will increase by 170% compared to pre-industrial levels. The changes are happening at least 10 times faster than at any moment in the geological past.

Source: NRC

The biological impacts of ocean acidification are still poorly understood. One of the most likely consequences is the slower growth of organisms forming calcareous skeletons or shells, such as corals and mollusks.

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