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Rising Acid In Oceans Is Worsening Industry Toxins

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Rising Acid In Oceans Is Worsening Industry Toxins

12 February 2013, by Harriet Jarlett

Acidification of UK waters may make industrially-contaminated sediments more toxic over time, say scientists.

Marine animals may be harmed by several stress factors

The study looked at crustaceans that feed on the surface of sediments from dredged ports and estuaries.

It found that ocean acidification, caused by climate change, causes sediments contaminated with metal to become more toxic. This can result in significant DNA damage for the animals that graze on these sediments.

'The combined effect on these animals, of coping with adapting to climate change as well as increased toxin levels, could prove to be fatal,' says Dave Sheahan, from the Centre for Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science (Cefas), senior researcher on the study.

Cefas already monitors the sediments from industrialised estuaries, such as the Tees in northeast England, for poisonous metal particles. The…