Katy Hill and Paul Buckley
November 2022

Climate change and the marine environment

The ocean and the climate are inextricably linked and anthropogenic climate change is having profound impacts on the marine environment. This forum explores the impact of climate change on the ocean to date, how it is measured and the role of the ocean in climate adaptation. 

The recording contains the following presentations:

  • Climate change impacts on the ocean: What do we know and how do we measure it? Katy Hill, UK G7 Marine Science Coordinator

While the ocean might be considered distant from our day to day lives, it touches on every part of it. From the food on our plate, to the oxygen we breathe, to the weather we experience. The ocean also plays a central role in our climate system. It has taken up over 90% of the excess heat trapped in our climate system and over 25% of carbon. How it absorbs, stores and redistributes these properties has big impacts on our climate, as well as on ocean ecosystems. Climate change is leading to issues in the marine environment such as ocean acidification, ocean de-oxygenation and shifts in the ranges of species. Advances in our ability to measure the ocean in recent years means we have made great gains in our understanding of the role of the ocean in climate. This talk will give an overview of ocean climate impacts, the developments in how we measure the ocean - including exciting new technological advances - and will look to the future in terms of how we develop the observing system and digital tools to support decision-making related to managing and protecting our marine environment. The talk will also cover the international structures and mechanisms which have enabled a global collaboration to measure, understand and predict our ocean – and to inform international decision-making. 

  • Nearly 20 years of the Marine Climate Change Impacts Partnership (MCCIP) in nearly 20 minutes… Paul Buckley, Principal Scientist

Since 2005, MCCIP has provided an impartial community view on UK coastal and marine climate change issues. Hundreds of leading scientists have volunteered to write MCCIP peer-reviewed papers on dozens of topics, from sea-level rise to seabirds, and temperature to transport. MCCIP also works with stakeholder communities, such as trade associations and conservations bodies, to assess risks and develop solutions. We recently dipped our toes into overseas waters, publishing the first ever assessment of climate change across the 14 UK overseas territories. In this talk, we will share our experience of working effectively across stakeholder groups and some of the key outcomes from our impacts and adaptation projects.