Seattle Post-Intelligencer: Washington has a $270 million shellfish aquaculture industry that employs 3000 people and accounts for 85% of the US West Coast’s sales in the industry. A task force created by Governor Chris Gregoire has released a report saying that ocean acidification as a result of climate change is a direct threat to the sustainability of that industry. In response to the panel’s findings, Gregoire issued an executive order telling the state’s Department of Ecology to coordinate the panel’s recommendations on fighting climate change. The order also announced the creation of a center on ocean acidification at the University of Washington. The task force’s report highlighted the connection between climate change and ocean acidification. The panel found that one quarter of fossil fuel emissions is absorbed by the oceans and that the average acidity of the oceans has increased by about 30% since 1750. The increased acidity is harmful to the development and growth of shellfish, and several of the state’s shellfish companies have already experienced difficulties in their hatcheries.