Thursday, 15 October 2009

Not a Sea of Love but a Sea of Acid.

Ha! You thought this post was about Blob Blogging Wingnut, didn't you? Not quite, though HER obsessive focus on the pre-born rather than our children who are living with the consequences of our wasteful habits is part and parcel of the problem of global warming.

Sigourney Weaver has produced a documentary about the effect of carbon dioxide pollution on our oceans.

Scientists have known for decades that when carbon dioxide mixes with ocean water it creates an acid, but only recently did they begin to realize what this growing quantity of acid would mean for ocean life.

As you can see in the film, this new understanding has some of the world's leading ocean scientists quite freaked out. What they can say with assurance is that if we continue burning fossil fuels as we are now, we will double the ocean's natural acidity by the end of the century. What's less clear is how damaging that will be for ocean life.

Scientists believe many organisms may not survive so radical a shift in chemistry. And some of those organisms -- plankton and corals, for instance -- form the foundation of the ocean food web.

If they perish, what happens to the hundreds of thousands of species further up the chain?

One could imagine that the oceans of this planet are the amniotic fluid, essential for the development of all the species on Earth. When they become toxic, what will happen to all living creatures?

1 comment:

The Anti-Social Socialist said...

Most living creatures will die, but quite a few will adapt and survive. Life is an extremely durable and adaptable thing, and there are already species who would think an ocean filled with acid would make a lovely place to live.

They've found fish that live happily in water saturated with sulfuric acid and bacteria that spawns in hyrdocloric acid.

Us? Yea, we're screwed.

But life will go on without us, and I don't think that is such a bad thing.

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