Ocean, People, Planet: The Impacts of Climate Change

Episode 114

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Ocean, People, Planet: The Impacts of Climate Change

Stat: 51% of Americans say the U.S. is doing a very bad or somewhat bad job of addressing climate change.

Story: Amid growing public concern about rising seas, extreme weather, and disappearing biodiversity, we speak with Michael Oppenheimer, the Albert G. Milbank professor of geosciences and international affairs at Princeton University and a longtime participant in the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, the United Nations body for assessing the science related to climate change. He explains the science behind the planet’s changing environment, its effects on the ocean, and possible solutions to avoid “the climate danger zone.”

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Ocean, People, Planet
Ocean, People, Planet

Ocean, People, Planet

There is only one ocean, essential to the life of everyone on Earth—and it faces perils like never before

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The ocean covers nearly three-fourths of the Earth. Vast and powerful, it is central to the life of everyone on the planet, supplying more than half of the world’s oxygen, providing food, recreation, and supporting economic vitality. Yet for all its seeming invincibility, the ocean has never been more in danger. Its very chemistry is changing as ocean waters become more acidified through climate change. Its inhabitants—from large sharks to tiny crustaceans the size of a human finger—are under assault with XX percent of fish stocks overfished. And ocean levels continue to rise, challenging the barriers separating people from water.