Aquatic Ecosystems and Fisheries: Current Research

Anthropogenic Stresses on Marine Ecosystems



This project is looking to develop a place-based research program in the Northeast Pacific focusing on impact of two major stressors in the NE Pacific: 1) ocean acidification, and 2) changing ocean thermal structure. An ocean acidification workshop was held at Friday Harbor Labs (San Juan Islands, WA) on August 25-28, 2008 to bring biological oceanographers into the problem of acidification, and to engage in planning the design of a mesocosm experimental facility at Friday Harbor Labs as a national research facility on acidification.

Following the workshop, a proposal was submitted to the National Science Foundation (NSF) for a science and technology center encompassing both the natural science and policy dimensions of ocean acidification. While the proposal did not get funded in its entirety, the proposal was designed in such a way that it can be deconstructed and submitted to other places by various researchers. For example, a separate NSF proposal just for the mesocosm facility did get funded (submitted by Jim Murray, UW/Oceanography). Another proposal focused on the effects of acidification on habitat within Puget Sound (sea grasses and sea weeds in particular) was submitted by Terry Klinger (UW/School of Marine Affairs) to the University of Washington Royalty Research Fund and funded.

Scripps Institute of Oceanography has submitted a proposal to the NSF for a science and technology center on ocean acidification that involves CIG PI Ed Miles and Richard Feely (NOAA/PMEL). Status of the proposal is pending. Plans are also underway to submit proposals to the Oak Foundation.

In addition to Milesís leadership in the effort, CSES will contribute research on potential changes in coastal upwelling and how this may affect shoaling of acidic waters of the Pacific NE coast, and will investigate what changes in management are necessary to address the coastal impacts of these stresses.


University of Washington; NOAA Pacific Marine Environmental Laboratory; NOAA Northwest and Alaska Fisheries Centers; Marine Biology Conservation Institute; The H. John Heinz Center for Science, Economics and the Environment; and the Joint Institute for Global Change Research, University of Maryland.

Primary Funding


Related Publications

For more publications on CIG's research on climate and PNW aquatic ecosystems, please see CIG Publications.