Environmental Issues Of Ocean Acidification

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Environmental Issues: Ocean Acidification The unique circumstances of planet earth are due to one special ecological feature: liquid H2O. Our planet is far enough away from the sun to keep all of the water on its surface from evaporation yet close enough to prevent it all from freezing. This water is the source and sustaining factor of life as we know it. In fact, the earth is seventy five percent water. Most of that water in contained in earth’s oceans. However, the last few centuries of global industrialization have brought major changes to our shores. Changes that need to be addressed.
Due to large scale absorption of man-made carbon emissions, we have seen a significant increase in oceanic acidification. (Boyd, Spinrad 2015) Acidification
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These new acidic conditions are also jeopardizing the one hundred thousand jobs involved in the one billion dollar west coast shell fish industry. We cannot yet know all of the long term and interrelated exosystemic effects of these new conditions. However, all current known information indicates that, whatever the outcome, it will not be good. (Boyd, Spinrad 2015)
Given the serious nature of oceanic acidification, I think most people would agree that it is a problem that we need to fix. The main issue we face in maintaining healthy oceans is emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2). This is the product of mass industrialization and the energy required to make it all possible. So where do all these carbon emissions come from? Fossil fuels, like oil, coal, and natural gasses, are combusted to release energy in the form of heat. That heat is used to create steam which power turbine generators. Those generators transform that energy into the form that we know and use. However, in that first critical phase of combustion, the natural byproduct of all combustion reactions is carbon dioxide (CO2). (BBC 2014) So, the next question would be, where
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One of the greatest emitters of carbon dioxide is the oil industry. It accounts for over thirty percent of all carbon dioxide emissions in the United States. (Environmental Protection Agency 2016) However, the oil industry is an important source of jobs in this country. Employing almost nine million eight hundred thousand people, and the average hourly wages of over forty dollars an hour. (Bureau of Labor 2016) Over four times the California minimum wage. It is a major concern of many that new regulations to the industry could harm these jobs. However, new jobs in the field of clean emissions free energy are on the rise and projected to grow in great numbers over time, as many as six million three hundred thousand new jobs by 2030. (World Watch Institute 2016) This is bolstered by the three million four hundred thousand new job that were created by the end of 2013. (Small 2015) With well-paying jobs in emissions free energy sources like solar, wind and geothermal we could, in all probability, make up any lost
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