With increasing concentrations of carbon dioxide (CO2) in the atmosphere, the extent of effects on the ocean and marine resources is an increasing concern. One aspect of this issue is the ongoing process, known as ocean acidification, whereby seawater becomes less alkaline as more CO2 dissolves in it, causing hydrogen ion concentration in seawater to increase. Scientists are concerned that increasing hydrogen ion concentration could reduce growth or even cause the death of shell-forming animals (e.g., corals, mollusks and certain planktonic organisms) as well as disrupt marine food webs and the reproductive physiology of certain species.
While not yet fully understood, the ecological and economic consequences of ocean acidification could be substantial. Scientists are concerned that increasing hydrogen ion concentration in seawater could alter biogeochemical cycles, disrupt physiological processes of marine organisms and damage marine ecosystems. This book examines potential legislative action by Congress relating to authorizing, funding, and coordinating research to increase knowledge about ocean acidification and its potential effects on marine ecosystems. (Imprint: Novinka )