The primary reasons include climate change, unsustainable fishing, and pollution (“Threats”). As the temperature increases the amount of coral bleaching and the spread of diseases will increase as well. The CO2 absorbed into the ocean reduces the amount of coral building. Using bottom-contact gear to fish could directly damage the coral reefs and bottom trawling creates the worst damages where it is allowed. Disease affecting the corals has become a problem recently as well as aquatic invasive species.
Even the slightest changes in the environment, such as pH fluxes and temperature rises, result in catastrophic events including coral bleaching. The Belize Barrier Reef and the Great Barrier Reef are two reefs that have experienced the most severe coral bleaching. This detrimental not only to the fish which depend on the coral, but to the economies of the surrounding countries which thrive on various water-related tourist attractions. With the increasing concentration of greenhouse gases, this trend only seems to be on the rise unless something is done to reverse it. Corals may be able to adapt to these stresses over time, but the real solution comes from lowering human carbon and other greenhouse gas output.
Ocean acidification is one of the highest environmental concerns that involve the change in climate. Ocean acidification is caused by uptake of rising atmospheric CO2. This increase in CO2 is from burning fossil fuels. Not only does it affect humans it affects numerous marine ecosystems. Coral reefs are one of the most affected systems by ocean acidification.
This article relates to science because it is about the coral bleaching at rapid rates and how humans may be behind the problem. Coral bleaching is dangerous because many animals depend on coral reefs and without coral, our ocean ecosystems could be in trouble. “Scientists surveyed 100 coral reef locations in tropical zones around the world, tracking each spot’s fate from 1980 to 2016. At first, only a few of the locations had experienced bleaching. But by 2016, all had been hit by at least one bleaching event, and all but six had suffered a severe event — defined as affecting more than 30 percent of corals in an area.”- (Paragraph Three).
The Great Barrier Reef is 350,000 kilometers long, the world’s largest living organism, and is home to 6,000+ species, but these species could be in danger. According to recent research, the Great Barrier Reef is on the verge of dying because of reckless human behavior. The reef is beneficial to not only ocean life, but also people and the mainland. There are also ways to people can preserve the reef. Some scenarios that have affected the reef are: coral bleaching, over fishing, and diminishing water quality.
Species of marine life are likely to decrease resulting in major biodiversity loss. Climate change has increased extreme weather such as flooding and cyclones. Extreme weather, such as cyclones has caused extensive amounts of physical damage to the reef, an exa... ... middle of paper ... ...he experiment consisted of two jars, one jar was filled with vinegar and the other jar had bicarbonate soda and vinegar in it. The bi-carb soda caused the temperature to rise. This is concerning because the sea temperatures are also rising.
The leading natural cause of destruction among the coral reefs is global warming. Global warming causes the bleaching of coral reefs to occur. Bleaching is a response to stress by the coral reef that happens when the water becomes to warm. The coral then put out a brownish zooxanthelle which causes them to lose their color. Without the zooxanthelle, the corals cannot provide nourishment for itself and th...
Extinction of certain species is a real threat as past research has shown extinction rates dramatically increase as atmospheric carbon dioxide levels increase. Slower growing shells and skeletons can have an impact on the food webs of marine life, therefore threatening even well-established species. Important metabolic processes, such as respiration in fish, may also be impaired by the acidity, as lowering the pH reduces the efficiency of oxygen exchange in their gills. Many marine organisms also act as a carbon storehouse, so as the oceans continue to absorb more carbon dioxide these organisms are less likely to be able to do this effectively, increasing carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere and ocean acidity further. The full effects of ocean acidification are not yet fully known but most scientists believe marine life will have trouble
Looking back to the causes of each mass mortality event, it’s important to note the bleaching that took place over time. 2010 was when it initially became an issue for the coral, with its effects being felt fully in 2011 and 2012. Countless factors contribute to this, most of which are caused by mankind. Increases in pollution are very clearly caused by humans and directly affect coral populations worldwide. Increased exposure to UV rays is a direct result of a thinning o-zone caused by human emissions; Ocean temperatures are rising as a result of these same emissions as well.
This results in heating of the atmosphere and the surface layers of the sea, with negative impact on corals: heat stress, acidification of the sea and increase in the frequency and magnitude of cyclones. There are other consequences of local pollution and enrichment with nutrients from the water. Currently, we analyze the implications of emerging diseases in populations of key corals, which are both of ocean warming, and pollution. Apparently the loss of quality of environmental conditions also results in a depletion of its immune resistance, which increases susceptibility to infection by pathogenic bacteria, it was reported. At the local level, the most important conditions are known as white diseases, for the speed with which wipe out the tissue, leaving only the skeleton, and the yellow band, that attacking the zooxanthellae - symbionts of indispensable corals to build the reefs--is fatal for agencies.