Ocean Acidification Conference: Acidity Up 30% Since Industrial Revolution - Producing Toxic Assets For The World

The 2nd Symposium on the ocean in a high CO2 world, is being held at the Oceanographic Museum of Monaco from 6th to 9th October, 2008, attended by 250 scientists from 32 countries . "Under the patronage of Prince Albert II of Monaco, the symposium is being convened by UNESCO-IOC, SCOR, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), and the International Geosphere-Biosphere Programme (IGBP)."

Abstracts for papers to be presented at the conference can be downloaded here (.doc file). Look below for an exemplary abstract of great relevance to the scheduling of "climate action", plus an opinion piece from TreeHugger friend, Russ George.

The bottom lines:
Ocean Acidification must be part of the basis for whatever climate deal world governments can next agree to.

"Toxic assets" currently impacting the world fiancial system could be passing concerns in comparison to the long term risks posed by ocean acidification: a.k.a. toxic oceans

Held, Hermann and Ottmar Edenhofer

Ocean acidification represents one of the most significant impacts of a rising CO2 concentration in the atmosphere. Within the upcoming negotiations about a Post-2012 'global climate deal', it should therefore shift the balance towards further CO2 emission mitigation efforts. Here we condense the strain of arguments that are hampering stringent mitigation measures until today and that were academically overcome only recently, summarised in two major reviews: Stern's report to the British government (2006) as well as the latest IPCC report (2007). Both reports outline that 'binding mitigation measures' (such as a 2° or a 450 ppm CO2 target) could be implemented at almost negligible reduction in economic welfare, while at the same time avoiding CO2-induced damages that are potentially an order of magnitude larger. We outline the key shifts in investment streams necessary to build-up emission-free capacities, and sketch structural elements of the 'global deal' that could mobilise the according investment switches. When designing such a deal, it will be necessary to weigh the impacts avoided through mitigation against potential impacts induced by mitigation technologies such as bio-energy, CCS (carbon capture and sequestration) or nuclear energy. We put ocean acidification into that context and argue that the ocean acidification community must increasingly become an active player in the upcoming negotiations on such a 'global deal'. This would facilitate better-informed political decisions as it would stimulate early-on additional research priorities in the ocean acidification community.

Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK), PO Box 60 12 03, 14412 Potsdam, Germany; hermann.held@pik-potsdam.de .

Toxic Debt Versus Toxic Oceans
Turn the page for an opinion piece, just written by Russ George, Planktos-Science, juxtaposing ocean acidification risk and the world banking crisis.

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