In response to the global problem of ocean acidification, the Paul G. Allen Family Foundation, in collaboration with the Oceanography Society, issued a challenge to the international oceanographic community, offering a $10,000 prize for the most promising new science-based concept of an environmental and/or societal response directed at reducing the impact of an acidifying ocean.

A total of 36 concepts were received from 7 countries and were evaluated by an international panel of oceanographic experts familiar with the problem of acidification. Six submissions were selected as Ocean Challenge finalists. These concepts were identified as highly relevant to the ocean acidification problem and offered approaches that would not only increase basic knowledge of the subject but would likely result in scalable procedures to reduce the impact on organisms, marine ecosystems, and/or industries.

Selected Finalists
  • Dr. Joth Davis (team lead), Puget Sound Restoration Fund, Bainbridge Island, WA, U.S.A. : "Cultivating seaweed to mitigate ocean acidification, and generate habitat, fertilizer, food and fuel"

  • Dr. Ruth Gates (team lead), University of Hawaii, Kaneohe, Hawaii, U.S.A. : "Building a biological toolkit to mitigate ocean acidification impacts and restore corals reefs"

  • Dr. Kenneth Johnson (team lead), MBARI, Moss Landing, CA, U.S.A. : "Towards a Global Ocean pH Observing System"

  • Dr. Bruce Menge (team lead), Oregon State University, Corvallis, OR, U.S.A. : "Mitigation of Ocean Acidification by Adaptation: Identification of Neighborhoods of Resilience"

  • Dr. Stephen Palumbi (team lead), Stanford University, Pacific Grove, CA, U.S.A. : "How marine species affect ocean acidification: ecosystem engineering and mitigation on coral reefs"

  • Dr. Greg Rau (team lead), University of California at Santa Cruz, Santa Cruz, CA, U.S.A. : "Mitigating Ocean Acidification Impacts Using Inexpensive Alkalinity Generation"