Biodiversity Threat 1: Climate Change


Climate change is a global or regional change in climate patterns. With increased levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide produced by the burning of fossil fuels, humans are currently experiencing the most accelerated change in climate in recorded history. Humans have been aware of climate change for several decades. Though the earth naturally cycles through periods of warming and cooling, it is heating at a faster rate than ever before. 97% of scientists agree that climate change is being accelerated due to human activity. This brings with alarming consequences to the natural world around the globe. These effects, in turn, threaten human livelihood and survival all around the world, risking our resources, water, and air quality, security, and physical safety.

The ocean is especially experiencing dramatic changes. The ocean is the largest carbon sink in the world. Through its interaction with the atmosphere, the ocean absorbs heat and carbon dioxide, which helps to regulate the global climate. There is a threshold, however, and the ocean can only absorb so much CO2. This is why excessive amounts remain in the atmosphere, contributing to the global warming crisis. Action is necessary for the sake of the future; 

Learning Objectives

United Nations Sustainable Development Goals

  • #4: Quality Education
  • #13 Climate Action

 Ocean Literacy Framework

  • #4: The ocean made earth habitable
  • #6: The ocean and humans are inextricably interconnected

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