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Climate change

The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) uses the term “Climate Change” to refer to climate change directly or indirectly imputable to human activities, whilst “climate variability” is the one generated by natural causes.

The climate on earth has varied many times due to natural causes, but today we have entered an era of rising temperatures caused by CO2 concentrations emitted into the atmosphere by human activities.

The most important impact of global warming we find it in our oceans.

Climate change poses a serious threat to the life in our seas, including coral reefs and fisheries, with repercussions on marine ecosystems, on the economy and on societies most directly dependent on natural resources. The danger posed by climate change can be mitigated by limiting global warming to no more than 1,5 °C.

The importance of the ocean

The ocean is essential for all aspects of human well-being and livelihood.It helps climate regulation, through energy balance, carbon cycle and nutrient cycle. The ocean is the home of biodiversity, from microbes to marine mammals, which are part of a wide variety of ecosystems within the ocean.

Rising temperatures

Carbon emissions from human activities are causing ocean warming, acidification and oxygen loss with some evidence of changes even in the nutrient cycle and primary production. Ocean warming is negatively affecting marine organisms at multiple trophic levels and fisheries with implications on food production and so of the well-being of human communities. Concerns on the effectiveness of the current ocean and fisherie’s governance has already been raised, highlighting the need to mitigate changes as soon as possible.
Rising temperatures represent one of the causes of biodiversity loss. More and more organisms are under severe stress due to climatic changes. Several species of animals and plants, in order to escape from global warming, move their frequency towards greater latitudes or altitudes, causing serious imbalances at the ecosystem level.

Effects of increasing greenhouse gases

  • increase of the planet average temperatures ;
  • change in rain frequency and intensity;
  • changes in the cryosphere: ice cover, snow and permafrost;
  • sea level rise;
  • oceans acidification;
  • increased desertification and soil erosion;
  • increase in the frequency, intensity and duration of extreme events;
  • change in ecosystem characteristics;
  • increased threats to human health;
  • increased human vulnerability on the planet.

It is important to underline that the release of carbon dioxide from the industrial revolution to present date has increased considerably exceeding 400 ppm in the atmosphere. In particular, the release of chlorofluorocarbons (are part of hydrocarbons, chemical compounds containing chlorine atoms, fluorine and carbon) determines the release of chlorine atoms that contributes to the degradation of the ozone layer recording seriously negative impacts. Among these, the increase in the penetration of UVB rays that causes a sudden rise in temperature and can lead to significant damage both at cellular and physiological level. It can also stimulate mechanisms of response that lead to a considerable consumption of energy and induces repair mechanisms that expose organisms to strong stress and consequent lowering of immune defenses, leading to the extinction phenomenon.

Oceans acidification

The increase of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere and its subsequent contact with water determines the formation of acidic carbon. This process is called precisely acidification of the oceans. This acidification causes an imbalance for example in the calcification mechanisms of marine organisms such as corals, that no longer find the ideal conditions for the deposition of calcium carbonate, meeting the so-called bleaching phenomenon.
The alteration of the carbon cycle prevents the formation of the shell of sea shells of many marine organisms causing their disappearance and damaging food chains all over our planet.

The climate conferences

The history of the Cop (Conference of the Parties), the conferences on the climate of the countries that have acceded to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) starts from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, in 1992 and goes until the Madrid Cop 25 in 2019.

Despite massive scientific evidence and tangible negative consequences of global warming, the world leader’s meetings to address Climatic emergency and reduce the rise in temperatures has not yet shown improvements. in the reduction of CO2. A path that is not at all simple, but unstoppable ! Every one experiences this reality that affect all regions around the world.

In Italy the Climate Coalition was founded in 2015. Marevivo is a member. The aim is that of building joint initiatives and mobilizations, both national and territorial, to achieve the greatest possible awareness and to reach a fair, binding and effective agreement to maintain global warming well below 2° C level.
Climate Coalition is composed of over 200 organizations of the third sector, unions, businesses, schools and universities, as well as thousands of citizens.

Go to the Climate Coalition website

Marevivo's proposals

We are well aware of what we are facing but the only good news is that we still have time to change our future. World governments must immediately place oceans at the centre of climate action, as the only way to avoid a disaster.
It is essential to find solutions that benefit the oceans in order to save the planet from global warming.

Marevivo asks governments to:

1. Remove all that has a negative impact on marine ecosystems such as seagrass beds, coral reefs, mangroves and other marine-coastal ecosystems, which are essential for the preservation and maintenance of biodiversity.

2. Invest in the research of renewable energy from the sea (waves, tides, currents…) to contribute to the reduction of CO2 emissions from the land. Global warming represents the most dangerous impact on marine ecosystems. The transition to de-carbonisation is an essential goal.

3. To keep fish populations within biologically safe limits. To do this it is essential to prevent fishing during the breeding periods of fish species, in order to guarantee their first sexual maturity.

4. To remove plastics from production processes and provide incentives for testing and installating collection systems for the waste carried by rivers intercepting it before it reaches the sea, together with a general reduction of consumption and a ban of disposable plastic objects.

5. To reduce pollution of all types, including noise caused by maritime traffic and mining activities. In fact, the sound waves emitted disturb all marine fauna and especially marine mammals, compromising their communication and orientation mechanisms and sometimes causing their beaching.

the association asks that these measures are adopted also in line with the Marine Strategy Framework Directive (2008/56/EC), that aims at a good environmental state (GES) and at the attainment of the goals found in Directive agenda itself.

What is climate change?

Watch our tutorial video on climate change concerning its effects on the health of humans and of our planet and on the tools we have to face them.

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