Our generation might be saying goodbye soon to the world’s largest ecosystem. The Great Barrier Coral Reef is not recovering as what was expected. If it continues, it is only a matter of time until Australia’s World Heritage Site will be proclaimed dead.
Millions of corals are dead, and while some have survived, they are still in “poor shape.” Coral bleaching has killed more than 93 percent of individual coral reefs. Is it too late to save the Great Barrier Coral Reef?
Previously, reports that claimed the Great Barrier Coral Reef is dead circulated in social media. While it was debunked, it is not to say that it was far from the truth.
It has been six months since the reef is suffering from the worst coral bleaching in its history. Although large ecosystems have the ability to be resilient, the damage has been too bad that there is only a “slim chance” for some of the coral reefs to regenerate.
Coral bleaching occurs when water’s temperature is too high which causes the corals to expel algae. This makes the corals turn white and die. With Australia’s summer approaching, coral bleaching is expected to worsen.
In the north of Port Douglas, not much corals are left. Sites in Lizard Island have lost over 80 to 100 percent of coral reefs with the coral cover dropping to 5 percent from 40 percent.
On a lighter note, because of geographical factors, the state of the corals down south is in a better condition. Most of them are resilient enough to recover even though they are not in the best shape yet.
In order to continue regenerating though, two-third of the reef in the south should remain healthy. Research has been conducted to know what causes the death of coral reefs and what can help their resiliency like a healthy microbial ecology. With that, certain measures are administered.
With the critical condition of the ecological community, the incident should make people aware of the dangers of losing natural resources. A collective effort to make a move before it is too late is imperative.
Photo source: Flickr