Thursday, April 11, 2013

Free community forum on ocean acidification in Port Angeles April 15

By Sandy Howard, communication manager, water quality and environmental assessment programs

Ocean acidification, its effects and local solutions will be highlighted at a community forum in Port Angeles featuring speakers from the Washington state Blue Ribbon Panel on Ocean Acidification.

The public is invited to attend the community forum from 6 to 8 p.m. on April 15 at the Port Angeles Senior Center, 328 East 7th Street.

Speakers include Eric Swenson, communications and outreach director for the Global Ocean Health Program, who will present “The Science of Ocean Acidification.”

NOAA scientist Nina Bednarsek will speak on “Ocean Acidification’s Effects on Pteropods,” which are an important food source for salmon and other fish.

Brad Warren, director for the Global Ocean Health Program, will present “Recommendations, Partnerships and Actions.”

Betsy Peabody, founder of the Puget Sound Restoration Fund, will describe “Local Impacts, Local Solutions.”

John Forster, Port Angeles aquaculture consultant, will address “Seaweed Farming: A Potential Counter-measure to Acidification and Global Hunger.”

Clallam County Commissioner Mike Doherty will welcome the panelists and attendees.

The forum is hosted by the Clallam County Marine Resources Committee.

In addition to the Clallam County MRC, the event is sponsored by the Northwest Straits Commission, Puget Sound Partnership, Puget Sound Restoration Fund, National Fisheries Conservation Center and Sustainable Fisheries Partnership.

To address the threat of increasingly corrosive marine waters, former Washington Gov.Chris Gregoire appointed the 28-member Panel on Ocean Acidification in February 2012. Co-chaired by Bill Ruckelshaus, the first administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, and Jay Manning, former director of the Washington Department of Ecology, the panel presented its findings and 42 recommendations Nov. 27, 2012. Learn more online.

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