An international study points to a “deadly trio” of environmental factors putting the world’s oceans at risk, Reuters reported.
Global warming, declining oxygen levels and acidification are to blame for the continuing destruction of marine ecosystems, the study said. Previous studies may have underestimated the threat that marine species face, with current oceanic conditions growing closer to those that caused mass extinctions 55 million years ago.
Scientists do recognize the basic causes behind these factors. A build-up of greenhouse gases is responsible for rising ocean temperatures. Nitrate-heavy pollutants cause algae blooms that deoxygenate water. And rising levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide can form weak acids when exposed to ocean water.