Climate Change: Coastal Marine Ecosystems

Authored by: Jennifer P. Jorve , Rebecca L. Kordas , Kathryn M. Anderson , Jocelyn C. Nelson , Manon Picard , Christopher D.G. Harley

Encyclopedia of Natural Resources

Print publication date:  July  2014
Online publication date:  June  2014

Print ISBN: 9781439852583
eBook ISBN: 9781351043847
Adobe ISBN:


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Coastal marine ecosystems contain a staggering amount of useable resources: an estimated US$14 trillion annually in economic and ecological goods and services. However, the health of these ecosystems (from tropical reefs to polar waters) is vulnerable to the effects of climate change. Increasing temperature and oceanic CO2 concentrations combined with other changing environmental parameters are predicted to cause changes in species reproduction and distribution, and affect biodiversity worldwide. Together, climate change stressors, overfishing, and species invasions continuously put pressure on these nearshore communities. The vast majority of scientific research indicates that many species, and overall biodiversity, will continue to decline this century. Curbing the effects of climate change on coastal marine ecosystems should begin with reductions in greenhouse gas emissions, and implementation of effective management strategies to allow these ecosystems to recover and persist.

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