Ocean acidification refers to an ongoing change in the chemistry of the ocean caused an increase in the uptake of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. 

The ocean absorbs about one third of human-created carbon dioxide emissions. Carbon dioxide is a ‘Greenhouse Gas’ produced by the burning of fossil fuels. When carbon dioxide dissolves in seawater, carbonic acid is produced. This is slowly increasing the acidity of the oceans which can have a range of harmful consequences, such as depressing metabolic rates and immune responses in some organisms, causing coral bleaching and affecting the ability of some organisms to build the calcium carbonate shells that protect them. These changes pose new risks for a vast range of ocean life, from clams and coral reefs to crabs, shrimp, lobster, krill, sea urchin, sea snails, and some kinds of plankton, to name a few.

For an animated crash course on Ocean Acidification by the PEW Charitable Trust see: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ogZkV-Yj7Hc

You can help reduce ocean acidification today by finding ways to reduce your carbon footprint. Many of these options will also save you money!

360px Ocean Acid COPY

The Problem:

Ocean acidification refers to an ongoing change in the chemistry of the ocean caused an increase in the uptake of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.

The ocean absorbs about one third of human-created carbon dioxide emissions. Carbon dioxide is a ‘Greenhouse Gas’ produced by the burning of fossil fuels. When carbon dioxide dissolves in seawater, carbonic acid is produced. This is slowly increasing the acidity of the oceans which can have a range of harmful consequences, such as depressing metabolic rates and immune responses in some organisms, causing coral bleaching and affecting the ability of some organisms to build the calcium carbonate shells that protect them. These changes pose new risks for a vast range of ocean life, from clams and coral reefs to crabs, shrimp, lobster, krill, sea urchin, sea snails, and some kinds of plankton, to name a few.

For an animated crash course on Ocean Acidification by the PEW Charitable Trust see: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ogZkV-Yj7Hc

You can help reduce ocean acidification today by finding ways to reduce your carbon footprint. Many of these options will also save you money!

What Can We Do?

Tip 1: Explore transportation alternatives. Could you walk, bike, use public transport, carpool, car-share or drive an electric vehicle to get around?

Tip 2: Choose an energy efficient vehicle and keep your tyres properly inflated. Correctly inflated tires can boost your miles per gallon anywhere from 4 to 40 percent.

Tip 3: Adapt your driving style. Speeding and unnecessary acceleration reduce mileage, waste fuel and money, and increase your carbon footprint.

Tip 4: Telecommute whenever possible rather than, for example, driving or flying for meeting people.

Tip 5: Use hot water more efficiently. Wash clothes in warm or cold water, lower temperature settings of heaters, use water efficient faucets and showerheads.

Tip 6: Reduce your energy use at home. Make sure your home is well insulated, especially in the roof and around windows. Remember to turn off the lights, replace incandescent bulbs with energy-efficient lighting alternatives, unplug power sources not in use, and use shorter cycles on your dishwasher and washing machine.

Tip 7: Carry out a home energy audit. Evaluate the efficiency of your appliances and lighting, check insulation, and look for air leaks around doors, pipes and windows to discover how you can save energy.

Tip 8: Conserve water. It takes a lot of energy to pump, treat and heat water so saving water reduces greenhouse gas emissions. Also, remember that often what goes down the drain ends up in rivers and lakes, which all run into our ocean.

Tip 9: Waste less food. Agriculture and food production uses vast amounts of carbon dioxide. Each year, food that is wasted is responsible for adding an estimated 3.3 Gtonnes of CO2 equivalent into the atmosphere.

Tip 10: Eat less red meat. According to the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations, “the livestock sector generates more greenhouse gas emissions as measured in CO2 equivalent – 18 percent – than transport”.

Tip 11: Buy less. Manufacturing products and transporting them burns a lot of carbon. Think “Do I really need this?” before you buy. This will also save you money!

Tip 12: Buy locally produced and seasonal food to minimise carbon emissions of transportation.

Do you have any more tips? Let us know at #OurOceanOurHealth

Useful Resources:

360 Debris

SeaChange Infographic PlasticPollution Final

The Problem

Nearly nine million tons of plastic waste enters the ocean every year. This debris affects fish and wildlife through choking or entanglement. It also poses an additional threat through the release of toxic chemicals from plastic material as it breaks down, and through the almost invisible danger known as ‘microplastics’.

Microplastics are tiny plastic particles, created either by the ocean grinding down larger pieces of plastic waste or introduced directly into the ocean as ‘microbeads’, such as those used in beauty products. Microplastic particles can be consumed by fish, seabirds and filter feeding marine animals such as shellfish, tubeworms and zooplankton as they filter the ocean water for their food or they may be eaten by smaller organisms that mistake these tiny particles for their natural food, which can have toxic effects or starve them to death.

Microplastics also put our supplies of healthy seafood at risk through contamination. Studies have demonstrated the ability of plastic to take up toxic substances and metals, which are present in trace quantities in almost all water bodies. Plastics, along with the toxic substances and metals they soak up, can enter the bodies of marine animals (e.g. zooplankton) upon consumption. It is thought that these contaminants can increase in concentration as they climb the food chain (referred to as ‘biomagnification’) - from tiny plankton to large predatory fish like tuna, salmon, and swordfish - and could ultimately reach humans at more toxic levels through consumption of seafood.

What Can We Do?

Tip 1: Use a biodegradable paper straw or drink straight from the glass rather than using plastic drinking straw.

Tip 2: Fight hidden plastic by refusing to use cosmetics that contain plastic microbeads. Beware of products containing polyethylene and polypropylene - if neither of these are listed in the ingredients, you're microbead-free!

Tip 3: Carry your own reusable water bottle instead of buying bottled water.

Tip 4: Choose metal cutlery over plastic.

Tip 5: Don’t put any products containing plastic (such as Q-tips, sanitary products or sticking plasters) down the drain or toilet.

Tip 6: Choose biodegradable or reusable plates over plastic plates.

Tip 7: Use reusable shopping bags (preferably cloth) over disposable plastic bags.

Tip 8: Compost your organic waste to use fewer rubbish bags.

Tip 9: Reuse, recycle and opt for no packaging when possible (e.g. through packaging-free shops).

Do you have any tips? Let us know on Twitter using #OurOceanOurHealth.

Useful Resources: Microplastics

Useful Resources: Marine Litter:

French flag

360 TakeAction2 copy                       

Even by making a small change in what you do every day, you can achieve big results in helping to protect the ocean.

The Sea Change campaign provides tips on what you can do to make a difference and useful resources to help make it easy for you to take action. This campaign is based on the latest scientific evidence with input from scientists and educators from a range of disciplines.

Make a sea change today to protect the ocean from: 

Plastic Marine Debris

360 Debris

What Can We Do?

Tip 1: Use a biodegradable paper straw or drink straight from the glass rather than using plastic drinking straw.
Tip 2: Fight hidden plastic by refusing to use cosmetics that contain plastic microbeads. Beware of products containing polyethylene and polypropylene - if neither of these are listed in the ingredients, you're microbead-free! 
Tip 3: Carry your own reusable water bottle instead of buying bottled water.
Tip 4: Choose metal cutlery over plastic. 
Tip 5: Don’t put any products containing plastic (such as Q-tips, sanitary products or sticking plasters) down the drain or toilet.
Tip 6: Choose biodegradable or reusable plates over plastic plates.
Tip 7: Use reusable shopping bags (preferably cloth) over disposable plastic bags.
Tip 8: Compost your organic waste to use fewer rubbish bags.
Tip 9: Reuse, recycle and opt for no packaging when possible (e.g. through packaging-free shops).

Read More

   
Ocean Acidification
360px Ocean Acid COPY

What Can We Do?

Tip 1: Explore transportation alternatives. Could you walk, bike, use public transport, carpool, car-share or drive an electric vehicle to get around?
Tip 2: Choose an energy efficient vehicle and keep your tires properly inflated. Correctly inflated tires can boost your miles per gallon anywhere from 4 to 40 percent.
Tip 3: Adapt your driving style. Speeding and unnecessary acceleration reduce mileage, waste fuel and money, and increase your carbon footprint. 
Tip 4: Telecommute whenever possible rather than, for example, driving or flying for meeting people.
Tip 5: Use hot water more efficiently. Wash clothes in warm or cold water, lower temperature settings of heaters, use water efficient faucets and showerheads.
Tip 6: Reduce your energy use at home. Make sure your home is well insulated, especially in the roof and around windows. Remember to turn off the lights, replace incandescent bulbs with energy-efficient lighting alternatives, unplug power sources not in use, and use shorter cycles on your dishwasher and washing machine.
Tip 7: Carry out a home energy audit. Evaluate the efficiency of your appliances and lighting, check insulation, and look for air leaks around doors, pipes and windows to discover how you can save energy.
Tip 8: Conserve water. It takes a lot of energy to pump, treat and heat water so saving water reduces greenhouse gas emissions. Also, remember that often what goes down the drain ends up in rivers and lakes, which all run into our ocean.
Tip 9: Waste less food. Agriculture and food production uses vast amounts of carbon dioxide. Each year, food that is wasted is responsible for adding an estimated 3.3 Gtonnes of CO2 equivalent into the atmosphere.
Tip 10: Eat less red meat. According to the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations, “the livestock sector generates more greenhouse gas emissions as measured in CO2 equivalent – 18 percent – than transport”.
Tip 11: Buy less. Manufacturing products and transporting them burns a lot of carbon. Think “Do I really need this?” before you buy. This will also save you money! 
Tip 12: Buy locally produced and seasonal food to minimise carbon emissions of transportation. 
Do you have any more tips? Let us know at #OurOceanOurHealth

Read More

   
Pollution of the Ocean by Contaminants
360 Pollution

What Can We Do?

Tip 1: Keep your sewer drains free from rubbish and toxic chemicals. Reduce the use of hazardous chemicals by choosing environmentally friendly household cleaners, pesticides and fertilisers.
Tip 2: Dispose of chemicals and items containing chemicals properly. Most communities have recycling centres that will accept used oil and other chemicals for recycling.
Tip 3: Never pour any oil or other chemicals onto the ground or into drains. Many of these chemicals eventually make their way to the ocean. 
Tip 4: Consume less pesticide-dependant foods to reduce the amount of pesticides used or go organic.
Tip 5: Do not discharge sewage from boats into coastal waters. Use pump-out stations. Report any malicious dumping that you witness to the local Environment Agency. 
Tip 6: Become informed about manufacturing processes and "clean" alternatives to products. 
Tip 7: Consider growing an ocean friendly garden that will revive our under-hydrated watershed and polluted ocean. More details on this on the Surfrider Foundation website: http://www.surfrider.org/programs/ocean-friendly-gardens 
Tip 8: Dispose of unused medicines responsibly; do not throw them in the rubbish or flush them down the toilet. Return them to your local pharmacy or collection centre.

Read More

   
Depletion of Fish Stocks
360 Depletion

What Can We Do?

What seafood YOU choose to eat can help alleviate the pressures on vulnerable fish stocks, preventing their depletion. Sustainable seafood is caught or farmed in a manner that enables production of that seafood to be maintained in the long-term. If WE act now, some threatened fish stocks can be saved!
Tip 1: Make smart consumer choices. Only eat sustainable seafood. There are plenty of seafood guides available online which tell you what seafood is good for you and the planet, and what isn’t. Some supermarkets pride themselves on ensuring the seafood they sell is from sustainable sources. 
Tip 2: Learn more about the fishing and aquaculture sectors so you can make informed choices as a consumer. 
Tip 3: Ask your restaurant if the fish they are serving is a sustainable resource. Even asking the question may cause them to investigate sourcing sustainable seafood in the future.
Tip 4: Buy seafood that has certification stating it is sustainable, for example it holds the Marine Stewardship seal of approval: https://www.msc.org/, ASC Aquaculture Production: http://www.asc-aqua.org/, The Fair Trade Capture Fisheries Standard: http://fairtradeusa.org/certification/standards/download-center , Food Alliance: http://foodalliance.org/shellfish, Friend of the Sea http://www.friendofthesea.org/about-us.asp?ID=9.

Read More

   

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The ocean makes planet Earth a habitable place to live and the marine environment is a source of vital human health benefits.

 Watch: Human Health and the Ocean

Learn more about the links between the ocean and Human health by clicking the leaflets below:

These Factsheets are also available in French. To access, click the image below. 

HHAO French Front page

Human Health and the Ocean Factsheets (French)

NEWS

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New Series of Online Workshops

Co-Exploring Ocean Issues and Ocean Literacy – a free online 3 week workshop, seminar series and learning lab (with the option of 1 graduate credit for a fee). &nb...

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‘Sustainable Fishing = Healthy Oceans’ Photography Competition Winners Ann…

The Centre for Development and Sustainable Fisheries (CeDePesca), an NGO working for sustainable fisheries in Latin America and a member of the World Ocean Network (Sea C...

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Crab Watchers Wanted: New Citizen Science Project to Monitor Crab Species

How does finding a crab on the beach make you feel? Excited? Wary? Fascinated? By joining Crab Watch, a new citizen science project taking place across Europe, your searc...

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Sea Change World Oceans Day Event - Safety at the Beach!

For World Oceans Day, Sea Change partner VLIZ held an event on "safety at the beach" in Oostend, Belgium, which over 180 enthusiastic visitors attended. The event include...

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Sea for yourself! New Position Paper by the European Marine Board presents…

With our coasts and ocean changing faster than ever before, Citizen Scientists will play a huge role in helping science to protect them. What animals live along our...

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Ocean Literacy for All : Sustaining SDG 14 Goals Through Ocean Science Edu…

Building on existing regional, national, and international ocean science education initiatives, such as those carried forward by the Sea Change project, the Intergovernme...

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Sea Change Ocean Literacy event to be held at the Nisa Marathon in the Cze…

Sea Change third party iQLandia is organising a Sea Change event as part of the 17th Nisa Marathon, an annual canoe race on the river Nisa in Liberec, the Czech Republic ...

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Youth Camp Teaches Teenagers of the Importance of Ocean Health

Sea Change third party AHHAA held a youth camp for teenagers from Estonia, Germany and Argentina in Tartu, Estonia from 22 - 24 March 2017. The course brought together 1...

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Exciting Ocean Outreach Activities Revealed in the Sea Change Project’s Th…

Press Release: March 2017 The third issue of the Sea Change project newsletter showcases a range of innovative activities taking place across Europe to boost European ci...

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New Marine Science iBook “Harmful Algal Blooms” to be Launched to Boost Oc…

Press Release: March 2017 A marine science iBook entitled “Harmful Algal Blooms” has been developed as part of NUI Galway’s contribution to an EU-...

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Crab Watch!

Crab Watch is a citizen science initiative developed as part of the Sea Change Project. The initiative will explore how citizen science can be used as a tool for increasi...

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Miniboats Help Students Learn About the Atlantic: Our Shared Resource

Imagine being part of a class that builds, decorates, and launches a miniature sailboat that can be tracked on the Internet as it sails the ocean currents around the enti...

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Estonian Science Centre to hold a youth camp on marine sports and environm…

Estonian Science Centre AHHAA is organising a youth camp on the theme of marine sports and environmental protection at the beginning of January 2017. The camp will be hel...

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Innovative Public Engagement Activities to Increase Awareness of the Ocean…

Press Release: October 2016 The Sea Change project is holding a series of innovative public engagement activities across Europe in 2016 and 2017 to change the way Europe...

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New Online Course Offers Educators Innovative Ways to Teach Ocean Literacy

Press Release: October 2016 A free online course entitled “From ABC to ABSeas: Ocean Literacy for all”, led by Sea Change partner UNESCO and its Intergover...

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Galway’s Young Coders use their Digital Skills to Raise Awareness of Marin…

Press Release: August 2016 Thirteen young Irish people were honoured for their work in creating innovative digital games and stories based on the health of the ocean at ...

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Second Issue of Sea Change Project News Now Available

Press Release: July 2016 The second issue of the Sea Change project newsletter is now available to download HERE. Sea Change is a three-year EU Horizon 2020 funded proj...

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Join the Sea Change - Take Action to Protect Our Ocean, Our Health

Press Release: July 2016 The Sea Change project invites you to take simple steps towards protecting our ocean by joining its new “Our Ocean, Our Health” camp...

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Turning ABCs into ABSeas – Engaging Education Stakeholders to Bring Ocean …

Press Release: April 2016 Teachers, educators, outreach workers, curriculum designers, media representatives, government agencies, parents and students across Europe are...

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Students Set Sail on a Transatlantic Ocean Literacy Initiative

In the coming weeks, the Wylde Swan ship is taking an educational voyage across the Atlantic Ocean (from the Caribbean to the Netherlands) with 30 secondary school studen...

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Sea Change to Launch Marine Coding Challenge for Young People

Press Release: 23 February 2016 Coder Dojo enthusiasts are invited to submit games as part of the European project “Sea Change” which aims to create a deeper...

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Think Big, Think Ocean Video Contest Now Open

Press Release: January 2016 Have you got a creative, innovative idea for how to increase people’s awareness and appreciation of the ocean? If so, you should enter the Se...

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Are You Ocean Literate? – New Resources Launched to Raise Awareness

Press Release: September 2016 Did you know that the ocean provides half of the oxygen we breathe - enough for every second breath we take? Or that the majority of marine...

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Whale Sculpture Highlights Threat of Plastic Pollution to the Ocean

Whale Sculpture Highlights Threat of Plastic Pollution to the Ocean A sculpture of two life-size whales, made from Somerset willow and 70,000 old plastic bottles, has ...

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Is it Possible to be Science Literate Without Being Ocean Literate?

The Ocean Literacy Campaign is changing the way educators and the public think about ocean sciences education: teaching ocean sciences is not just enrichment, but is esse...

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Bringing About a Sea Change to Protect Our Ocean and Our Health

Caption: Sea Change Consortium at the kick-off meeting in Plymouth, UK Sea Change, a new €3.5 million EU Horizon 2020-funded project, will address the challenge o...

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MEDIA CENTRE

Sea Change Promotional Material

  New Sea Change Infographics:How to make a Sea Change in the kitchen, bathroom, supermarket, office, on the commute, and when eating on the go.    ...

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Sea Change Videos

WATCH: Our Ocean Our Oxygen Our Ocean Our Oxygen from Sea Change Project on Vimeo.   WATCH: Sea Change: Increasing Ocean Literacy Sea Change: Increasing Ocean ...

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Press Releases

10 2017 - New Sea Change Resources Launched to coincide with 'Our Ocean' and 'EMSEA' 2017 Conferences in Malta 06 2017 - Crab Watchers Wanted: New Citizen Science...

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EVENTS

CONTACT

COLUMBUS Website Icon4
Phone

Jon Parr

Sea Change Coordinator

+44(0)1752 426479

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Email

Jon Parr

Sea Change Coordinator

 jpar@mba.ac.uk

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Address

Marine Biological Association

Citadel Hill,  Plymouth,

PL1 2PB, United Kingdom

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