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How Climate Change Could Impact Harmful Algal Blooms

Harmful algal blooms (HABs) are projected to increase as sea surface temperatures rise and ocean acidification continues according to Dr. Alan Lewitus, of NOAA’s National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science. His findings were shared during a symposium at George Mason University in October which covered such topics as climate change and extreme weather effects on […]

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NCCOS and Partners Explore Climate-Related Thresholds and Tipping Points

Stakeholders expressed concerns related to climate thresholds and tipping points for coastal systems through a workshop held at the Hollings Marine Lab August 18-19, 2014. Representatives from the National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science, other National Ocean Service (NOS) offices, coastal management groups, and academia discussed the application of tipping point concepts for coastal managers, and associated […]

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Coastal Ocean Acidification: The Other Eutrophication Problem

Eutrophication, or increased nutrient loading to estuaries, causes algae to bloom and consequently coastal hypoxia (low oxygen waters) when the algal biomass decomposes. Often overlooked, eutrophication can also produce carbon dioxide, which leads to a lowering of seawater pH (or increasing acidity). A recent invited paper by scientists supported by NCCOS and the NOAA Ocean Acidification Program shows low […]

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Declining Oxygen Levels Threaten Oysters in Chesapeake Bay

NCCOS-sponsored research by the Smithsonian Institution Environmental Research Center (SERC) reveals low dissolved oxygen (hypoxia) hampers oysters’ ability to fight Dermo, a disease that has ravaged oysters throughout the Chesapeake Bay, resulting in up to two to three times more infected oysters than in waters with normal oxygen levels. Hypoxia is commonly studied on large geographic […]

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Lecture Informs Public of Long Island’s Coastal Ills, Solutions

NCCOS-funded researcher Dr. Christopher Gobler and his students recently reported on the nearly complete collapse of hard clam fisheries in Great South Bay and bay scallop fisheries off the East End of Long Island due to annually occurring harmful algal blooms, hypoxia, and acidification. The team discovered excess nitrogen entering groundwater from septic tanks and […]

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Some Coastal Fish May be Able to Adapt to an Acidifying Environment

A new study shows that some coastal fish may be able to condition their offspring to tolerate seasonally acidifying environments, a result never shown before in wild fish populations. Researchers funded by NCCOS and NOAA’s Ocean Acidification Program sampled a wild, spawning population of Atlantic silversides, then combined this information with carbon dioxide exposure experiments […]

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Marine Shellfish Get a ‘One-Two Punch’ from Acidification and Low Oxygen

Recent research has shown that ocean acidification and low oxygen interact to harm early life stages of bay scallops (Argopecten irradians) and hard clams (Mercenaria mercenaria). The study, conducted by Stony Brook University and sponsored by NCCOS and NOAA’s Ocean Acidification Program, found that the combined effects of low pH (high acidity) and low oxygen […]

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Environmental Conditions Can Influence Development of Dermo Disease in Oysters

A recent NCCOS-sponsored study by the Smithsonian Institution showed that long-term exposure to daily fluctuations of hypoxia (low dissolved oxygen) increased Dermo disease (Perkinsus marinus) infection in previously uninfected eastern oysters. Surprisingly, daily-cycling pH (a measure of acidity) did not affect Dermo disease infection levels in conjunction with daily-cycling hypoxia or with continuous normal oxygen […]

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