NOAA's National Ocean Service

a bumphead parrotfish

What does this fish have to do with beach sand? The answer may surprise you.

What is ocean acidification?

Ocean acidification is affecting the entire world’s oceans, including coastal estuaries and waterways. Ocean acidification refers to a reduction in the pH of the ocean over an extended period of time, caused primarily by uptake of carbon dioxide (CO2) from the atmosphere. These changes in ocean chemistry can affect the behavior of non-calcifying organisms as well. Certain fish's ability to detect predators is decreased in more acidic waters. When these organisms are at risk, the entire food web may also be at risk.