Preserving & protecting our oceans
Many areas of science are seeking to protect the enormous and diverse range of habitats that make up our oceans. Microbiology is no exception.
High-profile stories on coral reef destruction, microplastic pollution and resource depletion demonstrate the urgent need to preserve the life within our oceans. Marine microorganisms face significant hazards such as climate change and pollution, which will have a knock-on effect on the ocean life they support. These changes may also introduce new risks to human health and economic growth. Understanding marine microbes and the external factors that affect them is necessary so that we can take measures to protect marine biodiversity. Marine microbes may even hold the key to tackling these threats, for example through the biodegradation of plastics.
This briefing introduces the marine microbiome as a vital component of ocean biodiversity and addresses significant threats such as climate change and pollution, which may further compound the risks to human health and the environment.