KFF becomes affiliate partner of the Intl Alliance Combat Ocean Acidification

We are extremely happy to have been welcomed as an official affiliate member of the International Alliance to Combat Ocean Acidification (OA Alliance.)

Cultivated and wild kelp forests can play a significant role in localised buffering ocean acidification through a process known as “ocean farming” or “marine permaculture.” Ocean acidification is a consequence of increased carbon dioxide (CO2) levels in the atmosphere, which are absorbed by the ocean, leading to a decrease in pH and increased acidity. This phenomenon poses significant threats to marine ecosystems, particularly calcifying organisms like corals, mollusks, and certain types of plankton, as it can hinder their ability to build shells or skeletons.

Cultivated kelp forests help buffer ocean acidification through their role in carbon sequestration, capturing and storing a substantial amount of carbon dioxide from the water through photosynthesis thereby reducing the CO2 concentration in the surrounding water, which, in turn, helps mitigate ocean acidification. Kelp absorbs CO2 from the water during photosynthesis, converting it into biomass. As a result, the pH of the water surrounding the kelp forest increases temporarily, becoming less acidic. This localised increase in pH provides a refuge for nearby marine organisms that are susceptible to the effects of ocean acidification.

It’s important to note that while cultivated kelp forests can help mitigate local effects of ocean acidification, they are not a standalone solution. Addressing the root cause of ocean acidification requires global efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, primarily carbon dioxide, which is the main driver of this phenomenon. Combining multiple strategies, such as reducing emissions and supporting marine afforestation efforts like giant kelp cultivation, can have a more substantial and lasting impact on mitigating ocean acidification.

Link to the press release