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Global Warming Chief Among Threats to Coral Reefs

Environment News Service – July 7, 2008

image The degradation of coral life has been happening for quite some time.  I remember multiple articles on the effects of water pollution on coral life back in the 70s and 80s (before the Internet so I can’t point to those articles – sorry).

This article now includes global warming in that threat.  Since this is coming from the 11th International Coral Reef Symposium and the organization reportedly meets every 4 years then the problem is at least 44 years old!

Interesting that it seems that every news article now has to include a count of scientists that sign on to the theory.  This one has 270 scientists writing the report.  How did they do that – did they each write one sentence out of each 270 sentences?  Also interesting that there were 2,500 scientists at this meeting – must be some interesting conversations at the bar at the local hotel in the evening!  Are there really 2,500 scientists studying coral?  Of course, that number includes “government officials” – your tax dollars at work!

Nearly half of U.S. coral reef ecosystems are considered to be in “poor” or “fair” condition according to a new analysis of the health of coral reefs under U.S. jurisdiction by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, NOAA.


… more than 2,500 scientists and government officials are gathered this week to discuss coral reef protection strategies and research priorities to further protection of sensitive coral ecosystems.ion, NOAA.


U.S. coral reef ecosystems, particularly those near populated areas, continue to face threats from human activities such as coastal development, pollution, fishing, sedimentation and recreational use, finds the report, “The State of Coral Reef Ecosystems of the United States and Pacific Freely Associated States: 2008.”ion, NOAA.


The 2008 report is the third in a series tracking the condition of U.S. coral reef ecosystems at local and national scales. The reports show that the condition of U.S. coral reefs has been declining for decades.ion, NOAA.


The paper presents new coral evidence suggesting the oceans may have acidified by almost a third of a unit of pH as a result of human emissions of the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide.ion, NOAA.


This suggests either that the corals are somehow amplifying the effect – or else that we may have gravely underestimated the rate at which the burning of fossil fuels is turning the oceans acidic.

You can read the entire article here.

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One Response to “Global Warming Chief Among Threats to Coral Reefs”

  1. Too bad corals can’t speak for themselves! I fthey could reefs woudl really be protected because people do not care