Ocean acidification is caused by rising carbon dioxide concentrations and affects the world’s ocean.  In this talk we will explore why this is happening and what role the oceans play in our global carbon cycle.  After understanding what ocean acidification is, and what some of its implications for biology are, we will turn attention to the situation in Pacific Northwest waters.  Our understanding of ocean acidification has grown thanks to both scientists and shellfish growers, working together to further define this phenomenon and its status.  Regional policy makers have recognized this problem and are funding further research on ocean acidification to better understand its impacts in Washington.

Dr. Jan Newton is a Senior Principal Oceanographer with the Applied Physics Laboratory of the University of Washington, and affiliate faculty with the UW College of the Environment.  Jan is the Executive Director of the Northwest Association of Networked Ocean Observing Systems (NANOOS), which is the regional association within the United States Integrated Ocean Observing System (IOOS) for the Pacific Northwest U.S. Her work through NANOOS seeks to bring knowledge of ocean conditions to stakeholders for their use in decision making in myriad contexts, safeguarding public economy, health, and safety. Jan is a biological oceanographer who continues to study multidisciplinary dynamics of Puget Sound and coastal Washington waters, including understanding effects from climate and humans on water properties. An appointee to the Washington Blue Ribbon Panel on Ocean Acidification and the West Coast Panel on Ocean Acidification and Hypoxia, Jan is now co-Director of the Washington Ocean Acidification Center at the University of Washington and is researching ocean acidification and its effects in local waters with many partners.

WHAS sponsors this free program on February 27, 7pm at Lower Columbia College in Longview, Washington in the lecture hall of the Health and Science Building, HSB101.