For the second time in just 12 months, scientists have recorded severe coral bleaching across huge tracts of the Great Barrier Reef after completing aerial surveys along its entire length. In 2016, bleaching was most severe in the northern third of the Reef, while one year on, the middle third has experienced the most intense coral bleaching.
“The combined impact of this back-to-back bleaching stretches for 1,500 km (900 miles), leaving only the southern third unscathed,” says Prof. Terry Hughes, Director of the ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies, who undertook the aerial surveys in both 2016 and 2017.”
“The bleaching is caused by record-breaking temperatures driven by global warming. This year, 2017, we are seeing mass bleaching, even without the assistance of El Niño conditions.”
“Ultimately, we need to cut carbon emissions, and the window to do so is rapidly closing.” >>
PRIMO underlines that climate change and global warming will cause high public risks, i.e. risk towards humans, society and nature. The damage to and loss of coral reefs – the ocean delivery room – will cause disruption of world ocean ecosystems and biodiversity will all consequences for quality of life and resilience.