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June 2, 2014

Introducing our New Climate Change Series

BY: Angela Pauly


© OCEANA / Concha Martínez


Have you heard the most recent climate change news? The World Meteorological Organization just announced that in April, CO2 levels in the northern hemisphere reached an average of more than 400 ppm (parts per million is a ratio of CO2 molecules to all other molecules in the atmosphere).  While this is not the first time levels that high have occurred, it is the first time scientists have seen a whole month of levels that high.

Dr. James Hansen, one of the world’s leading climatologists, has stated that: “If humanity wishes to preserve a planet similar to that on which civilization developed and to which life on Earth is adapted, paleoclimate evidence and ongoing climate change suggest that CO2 will need to be reduced from [current levels] to at most 350 ppm. “

The alarming impacts of climate change are splashed across news outlets more often these days, and the public and world leaders are finally acknowledging what scientists have been predicting for decades. Images of shrinking ice sheets, and stories about declining polar bear populations, rising sea levels, floods and draughts laying waste to agricultural lands,  have opened many eyes to the battle with time that we are now facing. But what is not discussed as often in the news, is how climate change is affecting what is going on beneath the surface of the oceans and what this will mean for fisheries and marine ecosystems.

That’s why we’ve decided to start a climate change series on our blog – though of course, we have written about this in the past, most recently when discussing the effects of acidification on the Mediterranean.

We’ll be looking into oil and gas exploration in the EU, acidification and many other problems facing our oceans. We don’t believe in doom and gloom here at Oceana though, so we’ll also be writing about tangible solutions.

Let us know if there are any topics you would like us to delve into, we’d love to hear what you have to say.