Each summer for the last two decades, Jim Parker has readied his small whale watch boat, and made a business out of ferrying tourists out into the cool blue waters of the Gulf of Maine. For years, it was… Read More ›
Gulf of Maine
Two cold winters have given the gulf some breathing space, but climate models and recorded trends indicate our seas are going to keep warming, with the conditions experienced in the “ocean heat wave” becoming the new normal by mid-century. The result will be dramatic changes in an ecosystem Mainers have relied on since the end of the last ice age, ones for which our communities, industries and government are poorly prepared to face.
Today, experts predict pH declines in the world’s oceans of .4 units by the end of this century—a mere 85 years from now.
The oceans absorb over a quarter of the carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. The more we pollute, the more they absorb, and the more acidic they become. It’s unlikely that some marine life that we depend on will be able to adapt to a rate of acidification that is over ten times as fast as during the PETM.