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Page added on September 30, 2005

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Marine Organisms Threatened By Increasingly Acidic Ocean

Every day, the average person on the planet burns enough fossil fuel to emit 24 pounds of carbon dioxide to the atmosphere, out of which about 9 pounds is then taken up by the ocean. As this CO2 combines with seawater, it forms an acid in a process known as ocean acidification.

A new study by an international team of oceanographers published in the September 29, 2005, issue of Nature reports that ocean acidification could result in corrosive chemical conditions that would be reached much sooner than previously thought. Within 50 to 100 years, there could be severe consequences for marine calcifying organisms (..). These organisms provide essential food and habitat to others, so their demise could affect entire ocean ecosystems.

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