SALINAS, Calif. - The University of California Santa Cruz will be getting nearly $1 million to study and predict the effects of ocean acidification. The $921,157 grant from the National Science Foundation was announced Tuesday by Representative Sam Farr (D-Carmel).
Ocean acidification occurs when carbon dioxide dissolves in seawater, leading to the water becoming more acidic. According to a release from Rep. Farr, acidity levels in the oceans and Great Lakes could rise to 125 percent of historic levels by the end of the century.
The grant will fund the development of new modeling tools to predict ocean acidification impacts on coastal ecosystems.
"With this new research grant from the National Science Foundation, we will be able to make substantial advances in our current ability to understand and predict the impact of ocean acidification on California's diverse marine ecosystem," said Jerome Fiechter, lead investigator at UC Santa Cruz.
In announcing the federal grant, Rep. Farr's office said increased ocean acidification threatens the coastal zone's $350 billion Blue Economy that employs nearly 3 million people in the United States.