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Climate talks must tackle ocean acidification

PARIS (AFP) – The world's top scientific academies on Monday called on UN talks to include ocean acidification, a dangerous byproduct of carbon pollution, in a global treaty to tackle climate change.
"Ocean acidification is expected to cause massive corrosion of our coral reefs and dramatic changes in the makeup of the biodiversity of our oceans and to have significant implications for food production and the livelihoods of millions of people," 70 academies of science said in a joint statement.
Their appeal came at the start of a 12-day round of negotiations in Bonn under the banner of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).
The UNFCCC is tasked with steering 192 parties towards a deal in Copenhagen in December that will set down targets for curbing greenhouse-gas emissions by the middle of the century.
"Everybody knows that the increasing concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere leads to climate change," Martin Rees, president of Britain's Royal Society, said in a press release.
"But it has another environmental effect -- ocean acidification -- which hasn?t received much political attention," he said.
"Unless global CO2 emissions can be cut by at least 50 percent by 2050 and more thereafter, we could confront an underwater catastrophe, with irreversible changes in the makeup of our marine biodiversity.

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