United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP)

Media advisory: Ocean acidification poses growing risk to marine life and food security


New report shows effects of rising concentrations of CO2 in marine environment

Carbon dioxide emissions from the burning of fossil fuels continue to affect our atmosphere, resulting in global warming and climate change. But rising levels of CO2 emissions are also changing the chemical balance of our oceans, causing them to become more acidic and posing greater risk to marine organisms.

A new report by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), entitled Environmental Consequences of Ocean Acidification, sheds light on the wide-ranging consequences of this emerging issue on marine food chains and ecosystems as well as human activities such as tourism and fishing. With around 1 billion people reliant on seafood as their main source of protein, the report also analyses the effects of ocean acidification on global food security.

As CO2 emissions continue to rise, ocean acidification is rapidly becoming a critical issue with the potential, if unabated, to affect many species and ecosystems and the marine-based diets of billions of people worldwide.

Date: Thursday 2 December 2010

Time: 10:30 - 11:00 (Cancun)

Location: Room 'Sol', Ground Floor, Moon Palace Expo Centre (Universal), Cancun


Carol Turley, Plymouth Marine Laboratory

Joseph Alcamo, UNEP Chief Scientist

Tim Kasten, Division of Environmental Policy Implementation, UNEP

Nick Nuttall, UNEP Spokesperson/Head of Media

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