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Posted Thu Mar 12 2009: from New York Times:
Rise in Ocean Acidity May Lead to Thinner Plankton Shells
There's now a good piece of direct evidence that the increasing acidification of the oceans, brought on by rising levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide, is affecting the ability of small marine organisms to create shells.... Andrew D. Moy and William R. Howard of the Antarctic Climate and Ecosystems Cooperative Research Center in Hobart, Tasmania, and colleagues found that the shells of one modern species in the Southern Ocean were lighter than shells of the same species in core samples from the ocean floor. Those core shells predate the industrial age, when CO2 levels started rising and the acidity of the ocean, caused by the absorption of the gas, began to increase. The researchers, who reported on their work in Nature Geoscience, found that the modern shells were 30 to 35 percent lighter than older shells of the same size range. "We actually think the shells are thinner," Dr. Howard said.
[Read more stories about: ocean acidification]

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TypeAAndy says: "Won't it make 'em easier to eat -- I mean if we don't have to crack their shells?"

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'Doc Michael says:
As if I care about plankton. What have they ever done for me?

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