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Microscopic, single-celled organisms called foraminifera have a fossil record that extends from today to more than 500 million years ago. Although each foram is just a single cell, they build complex shells around themselves...
What is blue carbon? It's a term used to describe the carbon that is captured...
Alaska’s pristine coastline is ripe for an influx of invasive marine species...
Ocean acidification is sometimes called “climate change’s equally evil twin,”...

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What is blue carbon? It's a term used to describe the carbon that is captured from the atmosphere by ocean ecosystems, mainly coastal mangroves, seagrasses and salt marshes. These coastal areas can hold up to five times more...
This foraminifera was collected as it floated about 3 meters below the...
It’s confirmed: both Antarctica and Greenland are losing ice —around 350...

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Today, carbon dioxide (CO2) levels in our atmosphere are the highest they've been in 15 million years. It's the cumulative...

The Ocean Blog

Globotruncana falsostuarti -- a foram that lived about 75 million years ago, during the Cretaceous Period, from southeastern Tanzania. By measuring the chemistry in the shell, scientists can estimate...
Today, carbon dioxide (CO2) levels in our atmosphere are the highest they've been in 15 million years. It's the cumulative impact of an ever-expanding population -- 7 billion people and rising -- and...
At a recent staff meeting a Smithsonian colleague mentioned that one of his pastimes this summer has been keeping tabs on the Arctic sea ice. The question that's on many Arctic-watchers' minds is...
Coral reefs are beautiful, vibrant ecosystems that house roughly one quarter of all marine species and provide billions of dollars in products and services to humans each year. But they are also...
Hantkenina mexicana -- a foram with elongated shell chambers that lived between 45-49 million years ago, during the Eocene Epoch. This specimen is from marine sediments that were drilled in the...
How will changes in temperature affect glaciers and ice sheets? Dr. Sarah Das from the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution explores this phenomenon first hand in Greenland, where she studies how the...
In December 2009, thousands of leaders and activists from across the planet converged in Copenhagen for the United Nations Climate Change Summit. Debate rages as to whether the summit achieved any...
Over the past several decades, Florida’s coastal wetlands have been changing. Along the eastern shore, researchers have seen small mangrove trees appearing in areas further north than they usually...
Over a 10-year period NOAA scientists have collected 72,000 seawater samples, and their data show that the ocean is becoming more acidic because of climate change -caused warming. That small shift is...
Chapter 3: Fragile Fauna Jelly Critters Grade Level: 5-6 Focus: Life Science- Gelatinous zooplankton in the Canada Basin Description: In this activity, students will be able to compare and contrast...
Burning fossil fuels, such as coal, oil and natural gas, spews almost 7 billion metric tons of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere annually. Industries are looking for ways to offset their emissions...
Dr. Karen Bice studies the foraminifera in ocean sediment to better understand climate change. More about scientists studying world climate change can be found in our Climate Change featured story .
Brian Huber studies fossil organisms known as “ forams ” to learn about climate change in this video snippet from the Smithsonian Marine Collections video . More about world climate change can be...
Tiny plant-like organisms called zooxanthellae live in the tissues of many animals, including some corals , anemones, and jellyfish , sponges, flatworms, mollusks and foraminifera . These microscopic...
Global climate change is a complex issue. Think you're in the know about the ins and outs of this critical environmental issue? Test your knowledge in this quiz from National Geographic. More about...
Alaska’s pristine coastline is ripe for an influx of invasive marine species such as the European green crab and the rough periwinkle (an Atlantic sea snail), warns a new study by a team of...
Since summer 2013, starfish along both coasts of the United States have been dying in large numbers—and not gracefully. As their tissues collapse, the starfish (also called sea stars) start to look...
What can students do to help the ocean? It turns out, a lot! These students from California are among dozens from the U.S. and Mexico who are developing action plans on ocean and climate-related...
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