We at Pangaea are deeply concerned about threats to the oceans future. Overfishing, debris pollution like the “garbage patches” we have seen now in three four oceanic gyres, chemical pollution that our friends at Safe Planet work on, acidification, habitat destruction, invasive species as we saw in the Canary Islands…. Each in its own is bad enough. The really serious challenge is how they interact. We barely understand how these pressures affect the complex web of ocean life alone. Take an over fished reef species, warm the water, inject CO2 raising acidity levels -thereby slow coral growth, and wash the reef with marine debris. How then will they fare. In our view, this is a case of 1+1 = 3. Stress factors compound and interact to create a multiplier effect that can push already diminished populations in a frightening downward spiral. Species can adapt over long time periods, but there is little evidence they can easily handle some of the drastic rates of change we now see.
The following is a great video report clip from the PBS News Hour