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provide the government with a report on December 5 which will hopefully open the door for action in Maine and throughout New England. Maines economic future rests on the fragile shoul- ders of the lobster industry and we have no idea how this resource will fare remarked Green one of the leading scientists on the Commission. One of the major recom- mendations coming out of the Commissions report will be to address this unknown and other knowledge gaps that exist. We need to expand our ability to monitor pH along the coast so we have a better idea of how condi- tions are changing. The Commissions report will also address actions that local communities and stakeholder groups can do to pro- tect their coastal ecosystems from rising acidity. One of the most eective actions communities can take is to limit nutrient runo in coastal waters. Wastewater treatment plants can be a big source of nutrients to coastal waters which decreases acidity. Plants across the state are ill-equipped to handle large storm events and often untreated water is discharged into the ocean when the system is overloaded. By upgrading these systems we could greatly minimize nutrient inputs to coastal waters. Nutrient run o can also be mitigated by improving local land-use practices. By limiting the amount of fer- tilizer and reducing the amount of impervious surfaces found in neighborhoods agricultural lands and public recreational areas we can lower nutrient output and slow down coastal acidication. Actions can be taken directly to vulnerable coastal waters to reduce acidity. Mark Green discovered that clam ats were two to ve times more productive after crushed up shells were added to the mud. Although it was once illegal to add shells to coastal waters because of the chance of disease it is now a regulated practice. Green hopes to continue to research the eect of this method on large scale projects and make the practice more available to coastal stakeholders. Seaweed aquaculture is another new tool against local acidication. Ocean Approved a Portland based aquacul- ture company that grows kelp grass is providing a local solution while generating a new economic income for the state. As kelp grows it absorbs CO2. Ocean Approved takes the product out of the water to be harvested before any decomposition occurs creating a temporary carbon sink to local ecosystems. A major part of combating coastal acidication is get- ting people to understand what is at risk and how they can help explained Payne. These problems dont just aect shellsh harvesters as the economic benet of each bushel of clams penetrates through the entire economy. When you consider the value that gets added to a bushel of clams as it moves down the production line from landing to retail sales and the indirect boost it brings to tourism it becomes clear that healthy and productive marine ecosystems are important to the entire com- munity. From this macro perspective shellsheries and aquaculture are valued in excess of a billion dollars annu- ally to Mainean income the state cannot aord to lose. Zooming back out While coastal acidication can be managed through local action there is only one solution to ocean acidica- tionreducing human emissions of greenhouse gases. If humans continue to stay on a business-as-usual CO2 emissions pathway average ocean pH will drop to about 7.7 by 2100 a 150 increase in acidity over the pre- industrial ocean and a level proven to be detrimental to some marine organisms and coastal economies. Ocean acidication might seem like a big deal and it is but it is just a small piece of the climate story. Everything we care abouteconomic social and envi- ronmentalwill be impacted by our carbon emissions. Thats why Manomet is working so hard with the business sector on climate change mitigation. There is hope for a resilient future but we need everyone to be involved. By bringing more people together to join the eort to address climate change we will ensure a vibrant safe and healthy future for generations to come. Clam flats like the one pictured here in Georgetown Maine are highly vulnerable to invasive green crabs and acidic conditions. Manomet is working with shellfish harvesters to help manage these systems. 10 MANOMET PARTNERSHIPS WINTER 2014