Pacific Oysters Gain from Ocean Acidification Data

OA observations benefits the $111 million West Coast shellfish industry

The immense value of ocean acidification research is evident in the Pacific Northwest where oyster hatcheries on the verge of collapse just a few years ago are again major contributors to the $111 million West Coast shellfish industry. Beginning in 2005, production at some Pacific Northwest oyster hatcheries began declining at an alarming rate, posing severe economic impact and challenging a way of life held by shellfish growers for over 130 years. Oyster production represents $84 million of the West Coast shellfish industry, which supports more than 3,000 jobs. A $500,000 investment in monitoring coastal seawater, which enables hatchery managers to schedule production when water quality is good, is helping to restore commercial hatcheries and expected to reap an estimated $35 million for coastal communities in Oregon and Washington. This example highlights the urgency of this problem and the value of ocean acidification research and monitoring.

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Explore the PMEL Carbon Group website to learn more about our ocean acidification research and montoring.