National Oceanic and
Atmospheric Administration
United States Department of Commerce


FY 2024

Evaluating the evolving ocean acidification risk to Dungeness crab: time-series observations and modeling on the Olympic coast, Washington, USA

Alin, S.R., S.A. Siedlecki, H. Berger, R.A. Feely, J.E. Waddell, B.R. Carter, J.A. Newton, E.J. Schumacker, and D. Ayres

Oceanography, 36(2–3), 138–147, doi: 10.5670/oceanog.2023.216, View open access article online at Oceanography (external link) (2023)

The Olympic Coast of Washington is home to four Coastal Treaty Tribes who have relied on the region’s rich marine resources since time immemorial. The region is characterized by large dynamic ranges of physical and biogeochemical oceanographic parameters, particularly during the upwelling season (April–September). Here, we present novel estimates of ocean acidification metrics—pH and calcium carbonate saturation states (Ω)—representing pre-industrial, present-day (using 2010 as the index year), and near-future (2030) conditions. We compare these new estimates of past, present, and near-future ocean acidification status and seasonality to published end-of-century (2100) ocean acidification projections under a high CO2 emissions scenario, and also to sensitivity information for Dungeness crab, a regionally important subsistence and commercial fishery species projected to show strong declines in fisheries yields and revenues later this century.

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