Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Marine climate change on the increase

In England, the Marine Climate Change Impacts Partnership (MCCIP) was launched in March 2005 and is a partnership between scientists, the government, its agencies, and NGOs. The principal aim is to develop a long-term approach to understanding and communicating the implications of climate change for oceans. Via, they've issued a report: ... The Marine Climate Change Impacts Partnership (MCCIP) report card 2007-08 highlights just how much climate change has affected the United Kingdom's marine environment and what the future impacts may be. Key findings from the report published today include:

* 2006 was the second warmest year for UK coastal waters since records began in 1870; seven of the 10 warmest years have been in the last decade.

* Warmer winters have been strongly linked to reduced breeding success and survival in some seabird populations.

* Models predict fewer storms in future but there will be increased numbers of severe storms

* Coastal erosion and flooding is expected to increase.

Cabinet Secretary for Rural Affairs and the Environment Richard Lochhead said:

"Climate change, including marine climate change, is one of the most serious threats facing us today. It is a truly global issue and can only be tackled if we work together. Our seas play a vital role in regulating our climate and are a lifeline for the communities that live around them.

"Our winters are getting wetter and warmer, sea levels are rising and coastal erosion is increasing. Our marine wildlife is now having to cope with these as well as other pressures, and is beginning to suffer as a result. Our marine industries also have to cope with changes. These are happening now and we must take action. We will shortly be publishing our consultation on proposals for a Scottish Climate Change Bill, including a mandatory target to achieve an 80 per cent reduction in Scottish emissions by 2050.

"The Marine Climate Change Impacts Partnershop (MCCIP) annual report card paints a disturbing picture. But MCCIP are playing a vital role in helping us understand what we need to do to tackle the problem of climate change."

Phytoplankton bloom off the coast of Ireland, NASA, Wikimedia Commons

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