WASHINGTON, Nov. 11 (UPI) -- Dead zones in the world's oceans are expected to warm and expand by the end of the century due to climate change, says a new study.
The dead zones, areas of water that are oxygen depleted and unable to sustain aquatic life, are going to grow. The study, published by the Smithsonian Environmental Research Center on Nov. 10 in Global Change Biology, said 94 percent of the ocean's dead zones will see a jump of two degrees Celsius.
"Over 40 percent of the world's population lives in coastal areas," said Keryn B. Gedan, a researcher at the Smithsonian Environmental Research Center. "We depend on these resources. No one wants to see a fish kill or harmful algal bloom at their local beach."
One other cause besides climate change that could be causing this is runoff into the bodies of water.
Major areas of water affected by this include the Chesapeake Bay in Maryland, the Black and Baltic seas as well as the Gulf of Mexico.
The warm waters of dead zones can eventually lead to the death of the fish, crab, oyster and shrimp in the area. Aside from damaging the ecosystem, the dead zones put a dent in the economies of areas that rely on fishing such as Maryland's crab market and the Gulf's shrimp production.
Gedan told the Washington Post that cleanup efforts like the one in Chesapeake Bay may stave off the effects of dead zones and mitigate the impact of climate change and pollution.