UK Ocean Acidification Research Programme (UKOA)

The 5 year UK Ocean Acidification Research Programme (UKOA) worked alongside international partner programmes as the UK’s response to widespread concerns about the increasing acidity of our oceans.

UKOA research increased understanding of how marine organisms, biodiversity and ecosystems respond to ocean acidification, improving knowledge of their resistance or susceptibility to acidification. UKOA was able to inform and advise policy makers involved with climate change negotiations and managers of marine bioresources on the potential size and timescale of risks. This will allow for development of appropriate mitigation and adaptation strategies and inform negotiation of CO2 emissions reduction.

Our scientists lead part of UKOA investigating the impacts of ocean acidification, including co-ordinating how the knowledge gained will be made available to stakeholders, policy makers, scientists and the public by hosting UKOA's Knowledge Exchange Office. We are also involved in three consortia projects within UKOA, designed to answer the following questions:

What are the impacts of ocean acidification on key benthic (seabed) ecosystems, communities, habitats, species and their life cycles?

A PML-led project which aims to quantify, predict and communicate the impact of ocean acidification on biodiversity and ecosystem functioning in three key UK coastal habitats; soft sediments, calcareous biogenic habitats (such as cold water coral reefs) and the rocky intertidal.

How will ocean acidification impact ecosystems and chemical cycles in UK and Arctic regional seas?

A PML-led project with the principal objective of developing novel scientific model based knowledge detailing the magnitude and timescale of risks of both ocean acidification and climate change for regional seas.

What are the potential impacts of ocean acidification on the life stages of commercially important species, on their associated ecosystems and socio-economics, and their capacity to resist and adapt?

We significantly contribute to this project which aims to understand the implications for society of ecosystem level changes resulting from increasing ocean acidity.

This project has been completed

Key information

Funder: Natural Environment Research Council (NERC), DEFRA - Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

Project start date: January 2010

Project end date: September 2016

View the project website
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Dr Carol Turley
PML Senior Scientist

Other participants

Dr Ana Queirós, Dr Frances Hopkins, Dr Nicola Beaumont , Dr Stefanie Broszeit, Dr Susan Kimmance, Professor Philip Nightingale

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