Climate Change in the Pacific Region
Pacific Region

Climate change in the Pacific Northwest Coastal & Marine Ecosystems

Coastal and marine ecosystems are already feeling the effects of climate change. Increasing carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, higher air temperatures and changing precipitation patterns are taking their toll on coastal and marine habitats with no sign of slowing.

Learn more about climate change impacts on coastal and marine ecosystems by clicking the associated links below:

Storm Intensity

Resulting from a combination of climate change effects the intensity and frequency of large storms and extreme wave heights are project to increase.

Wildlife and Plants

Loss of habitat, the pressure of invasive species and range shifts are just a sample of the issues effecting wildlife and plants in marine systems

Ocean Acidification

High carbon dioxide levels cause increasingly acidic ocean water with cascading effects for the aquaculture industry and the marine food web.

Sea Temperature Rise

Higher air temperatures translate into higher temperatures for the sea surface with a multitude of effects related to storms, sea level rise and the survivial of ocean wildlife.

Sea Level Rise

A warming climate not only melts ice, but also causes sea water to expand, taking up more space and resulting in rising sea levels. Interestingly however, not all places will be effected equally.

Want to learn more? Check out these great synthesis documents on how climate change effects marine and coastal systems:

Climate Change Effects and Adaptation Approaches in Marine and Coastal Ecosystems of the North Pacific Landscape Conservation Cooperative Region: A Compilation of Scientific Literature. Phase 1 Draft Final Report. (August, 2011) Full Report Executive Summary and Table of Contents

Climate Change Effects on Marine and Coastal Habitats in Washington State  (WA Dept of Fish and Wildlife, National Wildlife Federation, April, 2010). This paper is intended as a reference document/science summary.


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Last updated: March 7, 2013

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