Over the last 50 years, ocean warming represents the root cause of the Planet’s warming. Warmer waters accelerate the rate of ice-cap melting, increase the levels of mercury in the water, alter major ocean currents while widening the phenomenon of ocean acidification. In the last 30 years oceans have increased their average acidity of 26%, while predictions foresee an increase of 100-150% by the end of the century. Studies also confirm that warmer waters and high-levels in carbon dioxide also facilitate the development of algae blooms, that in turn absorb light and oxygen from the water, and contribute to suffocate marine life. It comes with no surprise as the basic chemistry of oceans never reached such levels of alteration since millennia.
[Water]: Large usage of commercial fertilizers included in agricultural runoffs flow from fields to the ocean because of rain or irrigation practices. Excess in nutrients in the oceans contributes to reduce the quantity of oxygen in the oceans and increase the water temperature. These are aspects that ease the increase in ocean dead zones. Scientists have identified 415 dead zones worldwide, the largest is in the Arabian Sea and covers almost 63,700-square miles.
[Nutrition for All]: Oceans provide high-quality nutrition and protein intake. However, plastic contamination of the water not only accumulates in animal bodies tissues but also favours agglomeration of heavy metals and other contaminants that both transit from marine life to humans once consumed.
[Climate & Earth Regeneration]: Oceans are complicated systems that perfectly works as the delicate balance among marine life, marine ecosystems and ocean food webs are respected. 50% of the live coral cover of reefs has been lost since the 1870s with future provisions for more than 90% of corals to die by 2050.
Participants will investigate the strict interconnections among oceans and climate change. Aspects such as habitat loss, ocean acidification, and eutrophication will be specifically tackled together with the plurality of ecosystems services that oceans provide. Both natural and anthropogenic causes will be considered, including inland pollution causes, along with best practices.