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14.8: Physical Factors - pH (acidity and alkalinity)

  • Page ID
    10369
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    pH (acidity and alkalinity)

    Seawater averages about 8.1 on a scale from 1 – 14 (1 is acidic, 14 is basic and 7 is neutral).
    Seawater is a buffered system meaning it is controlled in a range.
    If it gets too acidic it dissolves CaCO3, if its too basic it precipitates CaCO3

    Seawater becomes slightly more acidic near the CCD (carbonate compensation depth). Animals with carbonate shells and tests need slightly basic (alkaline) water in order to precipitate and maintain their shells. This is a potentially HUGE problems for the oceans with the increasing accumulation of CO2 in the atmosphere and oceans.

    Lycocline
    Figure 14.14. Carbonate compensation depth (CCD)

    This page titled 14.8: Physical Factors - pH (acidity and alkalinity) is shared under a not declared license and was authored, remixed, and/or curated by Miracosta Oceanography 101 (Miracosta)) via source content that was edited to the style and standards of the LibreTexts platform; a detailed edit history is available upon request.