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Increased Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide and the Coral Reefs

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What does increased atmospheric CO2 have to do with coral reef degradation? What are the gaps in knowledge? Provide scholarly articles for reference.

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What does increased atmospheric CO2 have to do with coral reef degradation?

With the increase in atmospheric carbon dioxide, which is occurring at a rapid rate due to global warming and fossil fuel emissions, the saturation state in oceans is expected to decline. This with in turn reduce calcification. A coral reef is the net accumulation of calcium carbonate from corals and calcifying marine organism. If calcification rates decline, so does the reef-building capacity. Coral reef calcification thus directly depends on the saturation state of the carbonate mineral aragonite in surface waters. More specifically, the increase in carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is leading to ocean acidification. Ocean acidification is the phenomenon of the progressively declining pH in the world's oceans. As atmospheric concentrations of carbon dioxide increase in the atmosphere, the ocean reacts by uptaking some of it. Once within the ocean, to maintain equilbiruim some of the carbon ...

Solution Summary

The increased atmospheric carbon dioxide and the coral reef are examined in the solution.