Seawater at the surface has a pH of about 8.5.
(a) Which of the following species has the highest concentration at this pH: H2CO3; HCO3−; CO32−? Explain.
(b) What are the concentration ratios [CO32−]/[HCO3−] and [HCO3−]/[H2CO3] at this pH?
(c) In the deep sea, light levels are low, and the pH is around 7.5. Suggest a reason for the lower pH at the greater ocean depth. (Hint: Consider the presence or absence of plant and animal life and the effects on carbon dioxide concentrations.)
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