Scientists are urging bold action fearing, that their kids will inherit dead coral reefs. Coral reef biologists are often asked this question repeatedly ” “When my kids grow up, will there still be coral reefs?”
Christopher Cornwall, a research fellow at Victoria University of Wellington in New Zealand, often asks this question to himself whether these beautiful corals will stay or not. Will they die due to change in climatic conditions.
According to the new research, the warm climate causes harm to these corals, resulting in damage and deterioration. A vast number of corals are collapsing every day due to hot weather and greenhouse gases.
Scientists are urging a bold act like coral breeding which helps in cultivating heat-resistant varieties of corals. They need a helping hand to restore them naturally for a longer time.
Without these efforts, the picture looks grim. As corals are biodiversity hot spots saving them would also support millions of fish species. Fishes are the primary source of nutrition, livelihood, and food. They also protect humans from floods as the storm urges inundating coastlines.
Marine heatwaves, ocean acidification, and overall warming have created a dramatic impact on the ocean. Oceans absorb all the heat caused by humans. Marine heatwaves will are expected to become more ghostly( white) with time due to temperature rise, and this process is called “coral bleaching.”
Corals live with a partnership with microscopic algae, and algae provide food, shelter, and other conditions for corals to prosper. But, due to extreme conditions and intense heat stress, corals expel the algae, which makes corals white like skeleton. This mass bleaching has left corals in the devastating state in places like the Great Barrier Reef in Australia.
“It’s quite traumatic to see these events in person,” Cornwall says. “What happens is only a small fraction of that coral will be able to recover from those events, and a large proportion of those, depending on the heat stress, will die.”
Oceans absorb all the pollution, thus making them more acidic. The reactive acidification can erode reefs and make it harder for corals to build in their skeletons.