Discoveries Highlight Danger to Reefs
Stephen de Tarczynski
Source: Inter Press Service News Agency
October 2, 2008
Melbourne, Australia -- Yet while the tracking of changes in and around reefs, such as the Great Barrier Reef, will play a part in monitoring the health of the world’s oceans, the reefs themselves are at risk of disappearing. According to the United States-based Coral Reef Alliance (CORAL) -- an international organisation aiming to protect the health of coral reefs, with a focus on reefs in the Asia-Pacific and Caribbean-Central American regions -- coral reefs face a range of threats, from pollution and sedimentation to tourism, fishing practises, and even coral mining. But Brian Huse, CORAL’s executive director, says that climate change represents the biggest threat. He says that coral polyps -- invertebrate animals whose skeletons, in the case of hard corals, build coral reefs -- starve to death as ocean temperatures rise.
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