Ocean Acidification and CO2 Emissions

Moved by National Women’s Liberal Commission

WHEREAS increased atmospheric CO2 increases dissolved oceanic CO2, thereby increasing ocean acidity concurrently with other chemical and thermal oceanic changes related to anthropogenically generated CO2;

WHEREAS due to the higher solubility of CO2 in cold water, the oceans near Canada undergo acidification at faster rate than do warmer oceans;

WHEREAS these combined chemical and thermal changes to our oceans may impact biodiversity, commercial harvesting, and ecosystem services, particularly with respect to calcareous marine organisms (corals, molluscs, crustaceans, urchins, stars) due to the chemical interaction between their calcareous shells and acidic water;

WHEREAS 300,000 Canadians work in ocean-based industries contributing $26 billion to the economy and 2001 census data found 38.3% (11.5 M) of Canada’s population inhabit the area 20 km from its coastline;

BE IT RESOLVED that the Liberal Party ask the Government of Canada to:

  1. officially recognize that there is a clear and definite link between anthropogenic CO2 emissions and ocean acidification;
  2. harmonize ocean and atmospheric monitoring efforts between multiple levels of government, industry groups, public stakeholder organizations, academic bodies, and international agencies, and make the data and information gathered publically available in real time;
  3. provide investment for the installation, operation, and maintenance of long-term, real-time ocean and atmospheric monitoring stations in ecologically representative areas, and utilize the amassed data to inform domestic and international emissions policy decisions.