Carbon in our Seas: Measuring Ocean Acidification

Ocean acidification refers to the process by which carbon dioxide is emitted into the atmosphere and then absorbed by the ocean. When water mixes with CO2, it forms carbonic acid, a by-product that changes the chemistry of the ocean and disrupts the life cycle of ocean animals. Harmful effects of ocean acidification are especially noticeable in near-shore environments where ocean life is highly concentrated. Newer, more cost-effective technology has allowed scientists to double down on monitoring efforts along shorelines. A spike in available data as well as rising global awareness around the damaging effects of fossils fuels has caused some ocean acidification experts to become cautiously optimistic that a solution can still be found.