On one hand increasing CO2 may lead to enhanced phytoplankton growth. On the other hand lowering of pH may have negative impacts on the health and reproduction of a wider range of marine organisms for example plankton, calcareous organisms and fish larvae. Currently the experimental evidence on impacts is often contradictory making it hard to predict what the future may bring. Many organisms, particularly those in extreme coastal environments are adapted to large pH ranges and are likely only to be affected once the pH range move away from their natural tolerance.
The ability of marine biota to rapidly adapt to pH changes remains largely unknown. Similarly to climate, acidification is currently unmanageable in a marine context, but represents an issue that management strategies for other drivers may need to take into account.