There is a disturbing article in the Seattle Times (and probably other newspapers) today about the extent to which (approximately 31%) the oceans have been absorbing the carbon released into the atmosphere. Apparently, our oceans have been absorbing atmospheric carbon for eons, but much more carbon has been released and is currently being released into the atmosphere now than at any time in recent history. The carbon then sinks down very deep, buffering the temperature affect it would have on the atmosphere. Problem is that in the process, heat is also being absorbed by the oceans, gradually warming the oceans -- and possibly worse (at least more urgently), the oceans are becoming more acidic. We have been seeing real-world affects of the PH change in the seawater here in the Pacific Northwest, where deep ocean currents cause an upwelling of cold, carbon-rich (hence more acidic) water along our coast, especially in certain areas. The acidic water prevents some of our oyster populations from being able to create shell material fast enough (the spat actually expire because of the extra effort required to build their shells faster than the calcium material is dissolved in the elevated acid sea water) to be able to reach adulthood. Consequently, in some areas here, the spat is raised out in Hawaii, in rearing ponds, then transported back to the PNW to be "planted" in the historic oyster beds after the shells are sufficiently formed. Bizarre! Fisheries scientists here and in Alaska are hard at work trying to figure out which species we depend on will be able to adapt fast enough to handle the higher acidity and which are doomed unless the current trajectory is changed. As I understand it (and I do not pretend to be a scientist by any stretch), it takes something like 30 years for the atmospheric carbon released in Asia to be absorbed, to sink into the ocean depths, and then to be carried by these deep Pacific currents to the coasts of Washington and Alaska, where it upwells. So, if we could turn off the carbon spigot right now (and that ain't gonna happen), the adverse impact at least here on the Left Coast will continue on the same steep trajectory it has been on for the last 30 years, for 30 years to come! Yikes! I really hope that is not the case. Why does the ocean acidification issue not get discussed on a regular basis? Are you guys on our other two coasts having to deal with this problem yet???