84. CARIM (Coastal Acidification: Rate, Impacts & Management): An integrated New Zealand project

Law C.S. (1,2)*, Cummings V.J. (1), Currie, K.I (3), Zeldis J.R. (4), Lamare M.D. (5), Ragg N.L.C. (6), Sewell M.A. (7), and the CARIM Team (1-7)

1 National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research Ltd, Greta Point, Kilbirnie, Wellington, 6002, New Zealand
2 Department of Chemistry, University of Otago, Dunedin, New Zealand
3 NIWA, Union Street, Dunedin 9054, New Zealand
4 NIWA, 10 Kyle Street, Riccarton, Christchurch 8011, New Zealand
5 Department of Marine Science, University of Otago, Dunedin, New Zealand
6 The Cawthron Institute, 98 Halifax Street East, Nelson 7010, New Zealand
7 School of Biological Sciences, University of Auckland, Auckland 1142, New Zealand

There is increasing concern regarding the potential impacts of acidification on New Zealand coastal ecosystems and the economic, recreational and cultural services they provide. The CARIM project is a new 4-year multi-disciplinary integrated project that aims to establish the sources, rate and variability of pH change at nationally important coastal locations, the impacts of acidification on both ecosystems and iconic species, and the potential of different approaches for managing these impacts. The research programme will determine the impacts of lower pH on primary production and substrate availability for larval settlement, the sensitivity of different life history stages of Greenshell Mussel, NZ Blackfoot Abalone and Snapper, and the potential for shellfish to acclimate and adapt to lower pH. The project will benefit from the broad genetic range of pedigreed mussels and abalone in commercial selective breeding programmes, to examine the genetic basis for resilience. Management tools will include the development of mass balance and hydrodynamic models that incorporate different sources of coastal acidification (terrestrial, oceanic, atmospheric), seasonal carbonate maps, and population forecast models for shellfish. Outreach is an important component of the project, and a variety of fora and media will be used to disseminate findings to Maori partners, stakeholders and communities to enhance the protection and management of New Zealand coastal ecosystems.