University Prep student Jacob Richey fills a sample bottle during a summer training session.
Washington Sea Grant
University Prep student Jacob Richey fills a sample bottle during a summer training session.

EarthEcho International, Philippe Cousteau, Jr.’s environmental education and youth leadership nonprofit, has launched an expedition—called “Acid Apocalypse”—around Washington state to explore the growing threat of ocean acidification and meet with students and scientists to learn how the issue affects their lives. The organization, founded by the grandchildren of legendary explorer Jacques Cousteau, is hosting Google Hangouts while in the field and will produce documentary-style videos, lesson plans, and other resources about ocean acidification for teachers and students.

Washington Sea Grant’s ocean acidification expert, Meg Chadsey, worked with the East Coast-based nonprofit to identify local high schools and youth programs that focus on this issue in the classroom or through field experiences.

“EarthEcho wanted to focus on youth who are engaged in ocean acidification, are affected by it in some way and want to do something about it,” Chadsey said. “Some of them are students I’ve helped train to monitor the changing chemistry of Puget Sound.”

The Cousteau team spent Monday and Tuesday on the Olympic Peninsula with members of the Makah and Suquamish tribes, learning about a citizen science water-quality monitoring program, and catching and preparing salmon using traditional methods. On Wednesday they will visit Bainbridge Island’s Eagle Harbor High School, where students are working with Washington Sea Grant and the Puget Sound Restoration Fund to come up with their own questions about ocean acidification and design a monitoring program to address them.

Visit the College of the Environment’s ocean acidification page to learn more about OA and related work happening here at the College.

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