The new study examines the erosion of corals of the Great Barrier Reef. The Great Barrier Reef is the world’s largest coral reef system composed of 2,900 reefs and about 900 islands. The study says that these natural structures are damaged due to water temperatures caused by environmental pollution. The study conducted in 2016, also revealed the same results.
Surprisingly, for the first time ever the researchers were able to estimate the damage. According to their findings, temperature fluctuations have destroyed 900 miles of the structure.
Great Barrier Reef Under Risk
For the purpose of the study, researchers have conducted an aerial survey of the coast of Australia, that is the home of largest coral structure present on Earth. The damage caused in these two consecutive years is very large which has occurred since last consecutive years.
It was seen that corals present in 1400 miles have died due to “bleaching”. The bleaching process has hampered the corals in present year also.
Robert Richmond, the study expert from Kewalo Marine Laboratory in Hawaii described the results as “daunting”.
What is Bleaching and how does it take place?
Bleaching is the process where algae present inside the corals are released due to pollutants, hot waters and intense exposure to sunlight.
The bleaching process does not kill the corals directly, however, these corals can be saved if the temperature is brought under control.
This is the fourth time ever that the bleaching phenomenon has taken place since 1998. In the year 2016, 67 percent of corals were affected across 500 miles in Australian Coral Reef. Scientists have determined that around 400 miles of Great Barrier Reef were affected due to bleaching.
The researchers think that if the temperature of the ocean falls down, the Great Barrier Reef may come to its normal condition and adapt to its changing environment.
According to researchers, it will take 10 years for reefs to completely recover from the negative effects of bleaching.