California Current

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Ocean Changes Cause Consternation

Changing climate threatens web of life along California’s coast

The California Current is a conveyor belt for cold water from the north Pacific.

It’s the reason that wetsuits are such big sellers in California. The river of ocean water known as the California Current barges in off the Aleutians, and as it rolls southward along the West Coast, makes for more than bone-chilling body surfing. It supports a robust stew of sea life.

But as Mike Lee reports for The San Diego Union-Tribune, it’s warming up. And that has researchers at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography concerned about future biodiversity off the California coast. Scientists say shellfish are already under attack from acid levels elevated when the ocean is forced to absorb more carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. Continue reading