Home Science Decline of diatoms due to ocean acidification

Decline of diatoms due to ocean acidification

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Diatoms are the most important producers of plant biomass in the ocean and help to transport carbon dioxide (CO2) from the atmosphere into the deep ocean and thus regulate our climate. Because diatoms rely on silica rather than calcium carbonate to build their shells, they were previously thought to benefit from ocean acidification — a chemical change in seawater triggered by the increasing uptake of CO2 that makes calcification more difficult. Scientists now show that diatoms, which are a type of plankton, are also affected. Analyses of data from field experiments and model simulations suggest that ocean acidification could drastically reduce diatom populations.

Source: ScienceDaily.com