A group of British Scientist are currently in the country servicing and using state of the art senors to characterize water quality and its sensitivity to climate change and human influences.
The visit to Fiji is being conducted in association with the Pacific Center for Environment and Sustainable Development at USP.
The scientist are back in the country to monitor the ocean acidification equipment installed at the Suva Habour last Year. The increase in the concentration of Hydrogen ions causes the seawater to become more acidic.
Dr. Socratis Loucaides-National Oceanograpgy Centre-UK says:
“Provided the monitoring equipment last year which was developed in Suva Habour to monitor change in the ocean temperature and ocean acidification and so this was done last year, this year we come back to visit it again and to service that equipment, provide some additional training and make sure the program keeps going”
Dr. Loucaides says:
“The equipment will provide a means to monitor the ocean for now and into the future, we wanted to see how ocean acidity to see how ocean acidity and ocean warming has changed from the last 100 years for example”
One of the main aim of the Program is through the state of the art equipment provided we can now monitor the oceans acidity and warming, and how this has affected the marine ecosystem around it.
The Program comes under the UK-Funded Commonwealth Marine Economies Program.
what is ocean acidification?
- When carbon dioxide (CO2-) is absorbed by seawater, a series of chemical reactions occur resulting in the increased concentration of hydrogen ions. This increase causes the seawater to become more acidic and causes carbonate ions to be relatively less abundant.
- Carbonate ions are an important building block of structures such as sea shells and coral skeletons.
- These changes in ocean chemistry can affect certain fish’s ability to detect predators is decreased in more acidic waters. When these organisms are at risk, the entire food web may also be at risk.