Mangrove & Coral Destruction
Widespread destruction of mangroves (Bahamas, Australia) and Coral Reefs (Caribbean, Red Sea) has resulted in the loss of some of the worlds most diverse ecosystems. As a side effect, this has greatly increased shoreline hazards and beach erosion rates. The greatest benefit of mangroves is their ability to reduce storm surge. This benefit is long-term and requires no maintenance. The 1999 super typhoon, Orissa, killed over 10,000 people in India drowning many with its powerful storm surge. This number could have been lower if the mangroves had been retained. Mangroves are lost because of clearing for development, logging, and shrimp farming. Coral reefs are lost by mining (Bali, Indonesia), sedimentation from agriculture on the upland (St. Croix, Virgin Islands), bad fishing techniques that kill corals (Pacific Islands), sedimentation from nourished beaches (Waikiki) and a host of other natural and global warming-related causes. Dubai is perhaps the single greatest example of coral reef destruction. The artificial islands built there buried vast coral reefs. Mangroves and coral reefs often provide protection for nearby beaches. Their destruction harms the beach as well.
Surfing in / Mangrove and Coral Destruction
Global warming and the current intense El Niño are prolonging the longest global coral die-off on record, according to NOAA scientists, who will will present the latest global bleaching update and outlook Friday, Feb. 26 at the 2016 Ocean Sciences Meeting in New Orleans.
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The rainforests of the sea, are one of the most prized ecosystems in the ocean. Coral reefs are home to about a quarter of all ocean fish species, making them hot spots of biodiversity. They protect shorelines from storms, provide food for millions of people, and provide economic benefits by encouraging tourism. Despite their value, few of the world’s reefs have been studied.
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A James Cook University researcher has found more than three quarters of Australians regard the Great Barrier Reef as part of their national identity and nearly 90 per cent believe it is under threat from climate change.
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Sir David Attenborough uses new technologies to create an interactive journey, highlighting the perils of climate change.
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Coral reefs, sometimes called the rainforests of the sea, are home to a quarter of all ocean fish species. They protect shorelines from storms and provide food for millions of people, yet very little of the world’s reef area has been studied scientifically.
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The threat posed by the development of rice and palm oil plantations to mangroves in South-East Asia has been underestimated, a study has suggested. Rice and oil plantations accounted for 38% of mangrove deforestation between 2000 and 2012, the research showed.
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The carbon capture and storage capacity of wetland vegetation, known as blue carbon, makes coastal habitats some of the most carbon rich ecosystems on the planet. A new study by Australian environmental scientists investigating the impact of shifts in coastal vegetation over a 70 year period, provides unique insight into how blue carbon stocks change.
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British naturalist Sir David Attenborough first visited Australia’s Great Barrier Reef in 1957, scuba-diving in its crystal clear waters along with an array of species. Nearly 60 years later, the 89-year-old returns to the world’s largest coral reef for a new television series, exploring the spectacular ecosystem.
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For years, many scientists thought we had a secret weapon to protect coral reefs from nutrients flushed into the seas by human activity. But a new study sheds doubt on that idea, underscoring the importance of sustainable growth in coastal areas.
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