Over the recent decade, total human impacts to the world’s oceans have, on average, nearly doubled and could double again in the next decade without adequate action.
Over the recent decade, total human impacts to the world’s oceans have, on average, nearly doubled and could double again in the next decade without adequate action. That’s according to a new study by researchers from the National Center for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis (NCEAS) at UC Santa Barbara.
Published in the journal Scientific Reports, the study assessed for the first time where the combined impacts that humans are having on oceans — from nutrient pollution to overfishing — are changing and how quickly. In nearly 60% of the ocean, the cumulative impacts are increasing significantly and, in many places, at a pace that appears to be accelerating.
“That creates even more urgency to solve these problems,” said lead author Ben Halpern, director of NCEAS and a professor at UC Santa Barbara’s Bren School of Environmental Science & Management.
Climate change is a key factor driving the increase across the world, as seas warm, acidify and rise. On top of that, commercial fishing, runoff from land-based pollution and shipping are intensifying progressively each year in many areas of the ocean.
Read more at University of California - Santa Barbara
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