Time for action on ocean risk

The world’s first Ocean Risk Summit held in Bermuda recently drew leaders from across political, economic, environmental and risk sectors to identify the potential exposures to ocean-related risk and tackle its broad-ranging consequences.

Scientists are telling us that the ocean is being transformed faster than anything our planet has experienced in 65 million years and, as such, the results could be transformational from multiple perspectives, including a broad new category of risk.

A new report titled Ocean Risk and the Insurance Industry, written by Falk Niehörster with the support of XL Catlin, was released on the opening day of the summit.

The report leaves no doubt about the urgent need for the insurance industry to equip itself for the severe and far-reaching impacts of ocean change — more intense storms, sea-level rise, loss of fish stocks, and ocean-borne viruses — and stresses that our industry has an opportunity to play a vital role by identifying risk-transfer solutions and mitigation strategies to avoid worst-case scenarios.

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Ocean circulation implicated in past abrupt climate changes

There was a period during the last ice age when temperatures in the Northern Hemisphere went on a rollercoaster ride, plummeting and then rising again every 1,500 years or so. Those abrupt climate changes wreaked havoc on ecosystems, but their cause has been something of a mystery. New evidence shows for the first time that the ocean's overturning circulation slowed during every one of those temperature plunges -- at times almost stopping.

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NASA to map coral reefs from the air to show impact of climate change

Coral reefs have almost always been studied up close, by scientists in the water looking at small portions of larger reefs to gather data and knowledge about the larger ecosystems. But Nasa’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory is taking a step back and getting a wider view, from about 23,000 ft above. Read more at TheGuardian.com

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New NASA Instrument Brings Coasts and Coral into Focus

The new Portable Remote Imaging Spectrometer (PRISM), created at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, California, is an airborne instrument designed to observe hard-to-see coastal water phenomena. In NASA's upcoming Coral Reef Airborne Laboratory (CORAL) field experiment, PRISM will observe entire reef ecosystems in more of the world's reef area - hundreds of times more -- than has ever been observed before.

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NASA takes 23,000-foot view of the world’s coral reefs

Coral reefs have almost always been studied up close, by scientists in the water looking at small portions of larger reefs to gather data and knowledge about the larger ecosystems. But NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory is taking a step back and getting a wider view, from about 23,000 feet above.

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New study links global ocean processes with local coral reef chemistry

Five years of data collected on reefs and offshore in Bermuda shows that coral reef chemistry – and perhaps the future success of corals – is tied not only to the human carbon emissions causing systematic ocean acidification, but also to seasonal and decadal cycles in the open waters of the Atlantic, and the balance of biochemical processes in the coral reef community. 

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As Bermuda braces for Gonzalo, underwater glider studies hurricane impact

An oceanographer is deploying an undersea glider to take measurements during the Category 3 storm, which is expected to hit Bermuda. Hopefully, the rare underwater perspective will yield insights that can be used to develop forecasting models.

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BIOS Time Series Helps Scientists Confirm Ocean Acidification

In a unique collaboration researchers from around the globe have studied data from seven time-series and found that despite the varying geographic locations, each of the time-series sites exhibited similar changes in ocean chemistry due to anthropogenic CO2, confirming what many scientists have believed for years: ocean acidification is indeed changing ocean chemistry.

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