The International Programme On The State Of The Ocean made this announcement last June, and I only learned about it today because one person Dugg it.

Mass Extinction Event of Ocean Species Soon To Be Inevitable

The oceans are at high risk of entering a phase of extinction of marine species unprecedented in human history, a panel of international marine experts warns in a report released today [pdf].

A deadly trio of factors - warming, acidification and lack of oxygen - is creating the conditions associated with every previous major extinction of species in Earth's history, the panel warned.

The combined effects of these stressors are causing degeneration in the ocean that is "far faster than anyone has predicted," the scientists report.

The urgent warnings emerged from the first-ever interdisciplinary international workshop held April 11-13 to consider the cumulative impact of all stressors affecting the ocean.

"The findings are shocking," said Dr. Alex Rogers, scientific director of the International Programme on the State of the Ocean which convened the workshop. "As we considered the cumulative effect of what humankind does to the ocean, the implications became far worse than we had individually realized."

"This is a very serious situation demanding unequivocal action at every level," warned Rogers, who specializes in the ecology, biodiversity and evolution of deep-sea ecosystems, with emphasis on cold-water corals, seamounts, hydrothermal vents, and seeps.

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I'm sadly nearly resigned to eating only wild jelly fish or farmed swimming vertebrates in the future. I quit eating sushi, my favourite flesh, a couple of years ago, when I found out about the status of Tuna. The Atlantic cod fisheries were shut down in 1993, yet they've never bounced back. The oceans have been broken for many years, and the deep ocean acid cline is rising year by year, getting nearer and to shore, til our oceans are reminiscent of the acid soup it was in geological history.

People tend to talk about environmental catastrophes in the 'future', but many of the catastrophes have already happened, we've been on a downhill slide for some time and no amount of technological prowess is going to fix it. What we need is less human consumption, of everything.

I thought mass extinction of the oceans all-ready happened.

I agree Chris, many extinction have occurred already and continue to occur.

Doesn't it seem like marine life would end up starving to death because of the amount of plastic they eat? The Plastic Killing Fields.

Here's a list of the top 10 most endangered seawater fish species. 

"There are plenty of other fish in the sea," goes the old cliché. But are there? According to the International Union for Conservation of Nature's (IUCN) Red List of endangered species, 1,414 species of fish, or 5 percent of the world's known species, are at risk for extinction. While habitat loss and pollution are significant factors in the decline of these species, the greatest threat by far is overfishing.

So what if one of these endangered fish ends up on your hook? The best policy is to release them back into the water, but not before making a few observations. When did you encounter the fish? In what location? How many fish did you see and what size were they? Were they adult or juvenile? What activity did you observe (swimming, feeding)? You should provide this information, along with any photographs you might have taken, to local wildlife officials.

While it's difficult to determine which fish are the most endangered, the following list represents 10 endangered fish commonly harvested for food. The 10 most endangered are described here.

Thanks for the link Chris G. Looking at that now.

This is further evidence of living out of balance with nature has its consequences and there will come a day we will know that is true ... by that time, we will have gone over the tipping point, if not already. Just think of the systems out of balance!

Ecological systems being polluted, including water, soil, air, and all living things. 

Religious systems that continue to think in terms of hierarchies and control instead of action with. 

Political systems that create a wide spread between weak and strong with no recourse. 

Economic systems designed to increase the spread of poor and rich, of have-nots and haves. 

We are on a cutting edge of history where all systems change whether we like it or not. 

This is to me the single greatest challenge of the scientific and atheist community. We are the rational ones, supposedly, we should be seeing the constant losses suffered by the entire ecosystem, for the simple pleasure and longevity and dominance of humans. If human reason is unable to see this, then the religious of the world certainly have no hope.

...the loss of Arctic summer sea ice forecast over the next four decades − if not before − was expected to have abrupt knock-on effects in northern mid-latitudes, including Beijing, Tokyo, London, Moscow, Berlin and New York.

The Arctic was expected to stop being a carbon dioxide sink and become a source of greenhouse gases if seawater temperatures rose by 4-5C.

Arctic climate change 'to spark domino effect'

Gonna check that article out Ruth!

..."Valuing the Ocean" [is] a major new study by an international team of scientists and economists that attempts to measure the ocean's monetary value and to tally the costs and savings associated with human decisions affecting ocean health.

What Is the Monetary Value of a Healthy Ocean?

The study estimates that if human impacts on the ocean continue unabated, declines in ocean health and services will cost the global economy $428 billion per year by 2050, and $1.979 trillion per year by 2100.

...the study is unique in stressing the interactions between and among multiple threats, which include acidification, low-oxygen "dead zones," overfishing, pollution, sea-level rise, and warming.

...the Stockholm Environment Institute --...-- states "The ocean is the victim of a massive market failure. The true worth of its ecosystems, services, and functions is persistently ignored by policy makers and largely excluded from wider economic and development strategies… This collaborative book presents an unequivocal argument in favor of placing the ocean at the centre of plans to build a sustainable future, while for the first time calculating the actual monetary value of the critical ocean services that we stand to lose." [emphasis mine]

So much for the conservative argument that we can't afford to protect the environment because that's bad for the economy.

Researchers at Oregon State University have definitively linked an increase in ocean acidification to the collapse of oyster seed production at a commercial oyster hatchery in Oregon, where larval growth had declined to a level considered by the owners to be "non-economically viable."

Ocean Acidification Linked to Larval Oyster Failure

Bluefin tuna are in serious trouble. While the US and Mexico are taking steps to curtail their catches this year, Japan consumes 90%.

Feds Consider Ban On Bluefin Tuna Fishing As Population Dips 95 Per...

... it is estimated that as few as 40,000 adult Pacific bluefin tuna remain in the wild, around four percent of the fish’s historic average.

With catches dropping dramatically recently and up to 90 percent of those caught qualifying as juveniles, this initial step by the federal government could result in the fish being added to the list of imperiled species that must be released immediately if caught.

Last week Mexico banned commercial and recreational fishing for bluefin tuna for the rest of the year after the countries’ catch reached the international 5,000-metric-ton limit for bluefin tuna.

The Atlantic and southern bluefin tuna — the other two types of bluefin — are already endangered. Until a recent assessment the Pacific bluefin was listed as “least concern.”

... last week the global authority on tuna fish, the Inter American Tropical Tuna Commission (IATTC), decided to delay discussions on fishing quotas until October after Japan, Korea, Mexico, and the U.S. could not agree on conservation measures.

Management measures in the Eastern Pacific and Western and Central Pacific are totally insufficient to preserve the Pacific Bluefin tuna stock,”...

Pacific bluefin regularly sell for thousands of dollars and can go for much more. A 500-pound bluefin recently sold in Toyko for about $70,000. Prices have reached $1.76 million for a single fish. Around 90 percent of the Pacific bluefin catch is consumed in Japan. [emphasis mine]

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