Jeremy Jackson, a professor of oceanography at Scripps Institution of Oceanography at UC San Diego, is not an optimistic guy about the future. He says human activities are cumulatively driving the health of the world's oceans down a rapid spiral and the result will be mass extinctions in the oceans on par with vast ecological upheavals of the past.
He cites the synergistic effects of habitat destruction, overfishing, ocean warming, increased acidification and massive nutrient runoff as culprits in a grand transformation of once complex ocean ecosystems. Areas that had featured intricate marine food webs with large animals are being converted into simplistic ecosystems dominated by microbes, toxic algal blooms, jellyfish and disease.
Jackson, director of the Scripps Center for Marine Biodiversity and Conservation, has tagged the ongoing transformation as "the rise of slime."