Environmental Effects Of Coral Bleaching

Decent Essays

They are home to a quarter of all marine species, yet occupy only 0.2% of the ocean. Coral reefs thrive in warm, shallow waters that provide shelter for many different forms of bacteria, fungi, seaweeds, reptiles, mammals, crustaceans and over 4,000 species of fish. According to the ecologist Renee Cho, “The reefs hold an annual global economic value of $375 billion, providing food and resources for over 500 million people in 94 countries and territories” (Cho). However, the reefs are in a detrimental crisis that could end in chaos. Coral bleaching is occurring around the world. Heat stress from global warming triggers the symbiotic relationship between polyps and zooxanthellae to collapse. This results in the expel of photosynthetic algae, leaving them bleached white. The coral reefs are in great danger and humanity is the one to blame. The best way to save what is left of the reefs is to reduce our man-made contributions to global warming and reconstruct new reefs before it is too late.
Between 1979 and 1990, more than sixty episodes of coral bleaching have occurred around the world due to human impact. Since then, even more events have taken place because of water temperatures rising. Within just the Pacific Ocean the Great Barrier Reef has been affected by coral bleaching the most severely, but Hawaii and Japan have also been affected. Australian scientists informed CNN that, “More than two-thirds of the coral in Australia's Great Barrier Reef is experiencing shocking

Get Access