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Ocean acidification MUST be addressed

A number of studies have been done in the Gulf of Maine. They focus on acidification, however, part of that, in particular in coastal shellfish areas, is attributed to local run off http://www.maine.gov/legis/opla/Oceanacidificationreport.pdf

see summary:

In addition to atmospheric CO2, there are two other drivers of inshore acidification potentially very important to Maine’s marine resources: freshwater runoff and nutrient loading from onshore sources.

1. Freshwater runoff is typically more acidic than seawater. Two of the most concerning impacts of climate change affecting ocean acidification in the Northeastern United States are greater annual precipitation and more frequent extreme precipitation events. Adding to the difficult task of understanding how Maine’s marine environment is acidifying, the dominant source of freshwater to the larger Gulf of Maine comes from watersheds and melting ice to the north entering from the Scotian Shelf.

2. Organic matter entering Maine’s coastal waters can also increase acidity. For example, large phytoplankton blooms resulting from the addition of excess nutrients eventually decompose and release CO2.

Gina Snyder    EPA – New England Assistance and Pollution Prevention

(617) 918-1837     http://www.epa.gov/region1/sso/toolbox.html

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Fortunately, there is a great team working on this issue led by my colleagues, Rep. Mick Devin and Sen. Chris Johnson. Details  here.

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