Are we ready for ocean acidification? A framework for assessing and advancing policy readiness

Rebecca Albright*, Lina Hansson, Sarah R. Cooley, Jean Pierre Gattuso, Paul Marshall, Nadine Marshall, Stephen Fletcher, Gunnar Haraldsson, Ove Hoegh-Guldberg

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

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Effective climate policy that addresses carbon dioxide emissions is essential to minimizing and addressing the impacts of ocean acidification (OA). Here we present a framework to assess the readiness of OA policy, using coral reefs as a focal system. Six dimensions encompass comprehensive preparation by ecosystems and societies for the impacts of OA and other anthropogenic hazards: (1) climate protection measures, (2) OA literacy, (3) area-based management, (4) research and development, (5) adaptive capacity of dependent sectors, and (6) policy coherence. We define standardized indicators, identify leading countries, and evaluate the case study of Australia, the country with the largest coral reef system. The framework provides a rubric for a government unit to self- assess strengths and weaknesses in policy preparedness and to prioritize future endeavors.

Original languageEnglish
Article number041001
Number of pages8
JournalEnvironmental Research Letters
Issue number4
Early online date28 Mar 2023
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2023


  • coral reefs
  • ocean acidification
  • ocean policy

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