Build an Action Plan

By joining the OA Alliance and endorsing the Call to Action, members commit to creating a unique OA Action Plan that addresses one or more of the goals within the OA Alliance’s Call to Action.

OA Action Plans describe real, tangible actions that members are taking—or will take—to better understand and respond to the threat of ocean acidification and other climate-ocean stressors and impacts.

As an Alliance we aim to showcase a mix of options and unique ways that members are approaching their commitments to taking actions on OA.

Members are supported in their work to develop and advance OA Action Plans through information exchange of the most recent and relevant science and policy best practices. Members also have access to the OA Action Toolkit, webinars, technical information exchanges, and through in-person meetings and phone consultations.  Members also have the opportunity to meet in person throughout the year at international oceans and climate meetings.

OA Action plans will not all have the same framework or structure, for example some members may choose to write a stand-alone plan, while others may decide to address ocean acidification mitigation, adaptation and resiliency within existing Climate Action Plans, Ocean Action Plans, Nationally Determined Contributions persuant to the Paris Climate Agreement, or decide to integrate actions across ecosystem management tools.

The Alliances encourages Affiliate members to create OA Action Plans that describe how they can use their capacity to support and encourage actions that mitigate, adapt and build resiliency to OA and serve a critical role in education, outreach, data gathering, information sharing.

The OA Alliance is supporting climate and ocean policy leaders in addressing important questions:

  1. What species, economies, communities and cultures may be impacted in my region?
  2. Does my constituency know about this issue? Are there steps we can take to raise awareness?
  3. Is there anything that my government can do now that will make a difference?
  4. How should my government prioritize actions that maximize our resources?
  5. How does ocean acidification fit into existing management frameworks?
  6. How does action on ocean acidification support existing high-level multilateral commitments?


(1)  Advance Scientific Understanding of Ocean Acidification

  • Members are joining, launching, or expanding nearshore and deep ocean monitoring networks that help determine where and at what rate regions are experiencing changing conditions;
  • Conducting studies to better understand the biological responses of local species to increased acidification;
  • Conducting OA vulnerability assessments across a region.

(2)  Take Meaningful Actions to Reduce Causes of Acidification

  • Members are working to drastically reduce carbon emissions – the main cause of ocean acidification – through Climate Action Plans or other commitments and targets that advance clean and efficient technologies;
  • Assessing and reducing the impact of local inputs and nutrients that can exacerbate OA impacts nearshore;
  • Managing stormwater and other land-based pollutants that cause damage to critical ecosystems.

(3)  Protect the Environment and Coastal Communities from Impacts of a Changing Ocean

  • Members are launching pilots to determine how submerged aquatic vegetation, like sea grass, kelp or mangroves, can sequester carbon in the water column and protect key resources like oysters, reefs, or shellfish;
  • Working with resource managers to better incorporate OA into existing management practices including habitat restoration projects and the creation of Marine Protected Areas;
  • Accounting for climate change and OA in fisheries management plans.

(4)  Expand Public Awareness and Understanding of Acidification

  • Members are engaging government, scientists, industry, community members and other key stakeholders through panels, task forces, committees, and workshops to increase understanding and awareness, develop recommendations, and build support for implementing actions.
  • Engaging the seafood industry, aquaria, NGOs and other private sector partners around ways to connect with their membership about what is at risk;
  • Creating public education curriculum to teach youth about climate change impacts felt in our oceans.

(5)  Build Support for Addressing this Global Problem

  • The OA Alliance registered a voluntary commitment to build the coalition and advance OA Action Plans at the United Nations Ocean Conference to Implement Sustainable Development Goal 14.
  • OA Alliance joined the Ocean Pathways Partnership, led by Fiji, the COP23 Presidency, which is working to integrate oceans into the UNFCCC process and into Nationally Determined Contributions as called for by the Paris Climate Agreement.


The guidelines and proposed process below may help get you started.


OA Alliance Call to Action

Upon joining the OA Alliance, review foundational documents:

  • Call to Action
  • OA Action Plan Toolkit
  • Other reports/ studies/ resources
Outline Existing & Future Actions

Begin outlining the existing or future actions you might include in your own OA Action Plan:

  • What are your priorities?
  • Which of the Call to Action goals are most relevant?
  • Are any actions already being taken to address OA in your jurisdiction through other policies or plans?
  • Who should initiate or convene a planning process?
  • Is there capacity to implement the plan?
Public Process

Engage the Community and Tell Your Story.

Find opportunities to reach the public, local policy makers, regional industry and other stakeholders:

  • Do you want to engage in a public process that identifies new actions or identifies priorities?
  • How can you share information about OA and its potential impacts?
  • How can stakeholders shape or endorse the development of your OA Action Plan?
Detailed Action Plan

Release your OA Action Plan.

  • Detail what your jurisdiction has done, is doing, or will do to advance the goals stated in the Call to Action and address the impacts of OA.
  • The OA Alliance can showcase your plan on their website and help communicate its impact.