Maryland’s Task Force to Study the Impact of Ocean Acidification on State Waters has issued a report calling for monitoring, industry partnerships, and collaboration with federal agencies in response to ocean acidification.
The recommendations are meant to assist the state reduce potential impacts and its coastal businesses prepare for a changing ocean. Maryland is one of the first East Coast states to take action on ocean acidification.
This Task Force was formed by the Maryland General Assembly during its 2014 session through House Bill 118. The bill states, “The Task Force shall: analyze the best available science regarding ocean acidification and the potential effects of acidification on the ecology of State waters and on State fisheries; and make recommendations regarding potential strategies to mitigate the effects of acidification on State waters and on State fisheries.”
Key findings from Maryland’s Task Force focus on seven areas that should be addressed in order to enhance acidification understanding, recognize its impacts on Maryland aquatic industries and leverage resources to capitalize on federal and other state acidification research and monitoring programs.
Key areas include:
– Enhancing monitoring of State waters to quantify scale, patterns and trends of ocean acidification
– Establishing additional research priorities in estuarine and coastal waters Improving coordination with other state and federal resource managers
– Focusing on impacts to key species and associated activities, such as blue crabs, oysters, and striped bass
– Providing direct support to affected industries
– Pursuing legislative action
– Improving communications and outreach
Addressing the above seven issue areas identified by the Task Force will position Maryland in both the short- and long-term to leverage existing monitoring, research and programmatic assets; collect the information necessary to assess the impacts of acidification on our aquatic resources; communicate the results to various stakeholders to meet the demands of our expanding aquatic industries; and mitigate the impacts of rising CO2 emissions.
View the final report at: http://bit.ly/MDOATF_finalreport.
source: National Aquarium