Maria Dolan of Slate warns us about one of the side effects of climate change: the upcoming end of oysters. Reportedly, "Ocean waters are turning corrosive, and it's happening so quickly scientists say there may not be any oysters left to eat in coming decades."
Ocean acidification, as scientists call this pickling of the seas, is, like climate change, a result of the enormous amount of carbon dioxide humans have pumped into the atmosphere. Oceans have absorbed about a quarter of that output, and ocean chemistry has changed as a result. Surface water pH has long been an alkaline 8.2, not far from the pH of baking soda, but it now averages about 8.1. That doesn't look like much, but since pH is a logarithmic scale, that means a 30 percent increase in the acidity. By the end of this century, surface water pH could further lower to 7.8 or below.
We don't yet know who the ocean's winners and losers will be in the more corrosive world. Jellyfish and some seagrasses may thrive under more acidic conditions. On the other hand, calcifiers -- organisms that make calcium carbonate shells and skeletons, such as shellfish and corals -- appear to be in trouble. In the United States, scientists have seen dissolving clam larvae in Maine, corroded oysters in Washington state's hatcheries, and mussels with thinned shells off the Pacific Northwest coast.
|This is Probably the End for the Monarch Butterfly|
|That Mobile Phones Are Phones is Besides the Point|
|"What we really need is a sound way to teach our machines to be ethical."|
|Meat Eating Furniture|
|In 10 Years, 50% of Jobs Will Be Handled by Robots and AI|
|“A low flyover of Jupiter's moon Europa.”|
|“A sophisticated global marketing strategy from an industry that is desperate to attract new smokers.”|
|“If you’re dating, you’re going to be let down. You’re not going to be everyone’s cup of tea.”|
|Recycled Vacuum Lamps|
|U.S.S. Enterprise Owner's Manual|
|CaptchaTweet: Write Tweets in Captcha Form|
|iPhone 6, the First Smartphone to Disrupt NSA's Spying|
|How to Avoid Jury Duty|
|“The Amazon Dash button for horny men and women who don’t feel comfortable telling their partner they’d like to have sex.”|
|The (Very Scary) People of Public Transit|
|“When Life Gives You Lemons.”|
|“How this religious holiday became the rampant, love-fuelled corp-fest.”|