Ocean Acidification Should Be More Worrying Than Atmospheric Climate Change (Resolves to Probability)
closes 2100

Of course climate change gets the majority of attention in popular press and Ocean Acidification is highly related to Climate Change due to carbon emissions. This is an attempt to have a clear parametric ratio view of how worrying Ocean Acidification is compared to Atmospheric Climate Change.

While it may be difficult to purely disentangle the two phenomena from one another as the Ocean does appear to be a sink for atmospheric carbon, this bet represents a ratio of how worried we should all be about Ocean Acidification, which does not get much popular press coverage, vs. Atmosphereic Climate Change, which gets tons of press coverage.

So for example, if we're at 50%, we should be equally worried about the two. If we're at 80%, we should be much more worried about Ocean Acidification (for whatever reasons are presented in the discussion).

Resolves to probability.

I will resolve sooner than the end of the Century if one or the other phenomena clearly cataclysmically already occured.

Close date updated to 2099-12-31 11:59 pm

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PatrickDelaney avatar
Patrick Delaney

@Austin relevant to the seawater greening article

JuJumper avatar

Isn't seawater a buffer solution which means it needs disproportionately much CO₂ to meaningfully change pH?

4 replies
PatrickDelaney avatar
Patrick Delaney

@JuJumper Can you cite that?

habakuk avatar

@JuJumper I think the bicarbonate system is basically the main buffer system in sea water. Also, small pH changes can have devastating effects on biological system.

PatrickDelaney avatar
Patrick Delaney

@habakuk Thank you both for your questions and thoughts. Any citations to anything that is said would be appreciated!

habakuk avatar


So, I have no background in geochemistry. I quickly checked the literature, and it seems like this is the correct citation for a description of the relative importance of different buffering systems in seawater. For the second claim, I am sure you can find plenty information in basically any biology text book.