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Two major groups in Oregon and Washington - the Oregon Climate Change Research Institute at OSU and the Climate Impacts Group at UW - are actively researching climate change in the Pacific Northwest, They have listed potential impacts of climate change on ocean and coastal communities:

  • Sea level rise and increased winter storms, precipitation, and river flow can result in increased risk of coastal hazards (flooding, erosion, landslides)
  • Rising ocean temperatures can alter ecosystems and animal communities
  • Increased ocean stratification can result in more frequent phytoplankton blooms, including Harmful Algal Blooms
  • Ocean acidification will make it harder for calcifying organisms to grow shells
  • Changes to ocean currents will effect larval dispersal and other ecosystem components

Areas of Emphasis

Related Topics

Coastal & Marine Spatial Planning

Related NANOOS Products

NOAA Pacific Marine Environmental Lab (PMEL) Carbon Program

The primary mission is to evaluate the variability in air-sea CO2 fluxes by conducting high resolution time-series measurements of atmospheric boundary layer and surface ocean CO2 partial pressure (pCO2).

Columbia River Climatological Atlas

The Climatological Atlas is a scientific project designed to offer insights into multiple scales of variability of the contemporary Columbia River coastal margin, via statistics of an extensive set of indicators. The focus of the Atlas is on indicators for the estuary and plume, but indicators of external forcing are also included for context.

Puget Sound ORCA

Oceanic Remote Chemical Analyzer (ORCA) measures physical, chemical, and biological water characteristics in Hood Canal.

Cha'ba Buoy

Multi-depth moored buoy deployed off La Push, Washington that collects physical, chemical, and biological water variables.

NANOOS members involved in this effort include:

Regional Coastal Observing Systems



Central and Northern California

Great Lakes

Gulf of Mexico

Pacific Islands


Northeast Atlantic

Pacific Northwest

Southern California

Southeast Atlantic