The times we are living are not the best for our planet. It is obvious just how much we damaged nature, and the consequences become serious every day. When it comes to Australia’s Great Barrier Reef, things are not looking good either.
It is a known fact that the barrier is quite important for the environment, especially since it is protected for its biodiversity. There are numerous species living there, and the Great Barrier Reef is stretching for 1,400 miles.
But for quite some time, this wonderful ecosystem has been in danger. Things are getting worse and worse, and if we do not do anything to fix the problem, we might put ourselves in danger as well.
Extreme heat killing the coral
One of the hardest hits for the Great Barrier Reef was when half of the coral died back in 2016 and 2017. This happened because of extreme heat, but the worst thing is that the situation is not getting any better.
Climate change is what causes this severe heat, and humans are not doing anything in order to stop it. One the contrary, things are becoming worse. According to some studies, 90% of the corals in the world will be dead by 20150.
When it gets too hot, coral will turn white, and it might never recover from this, and die. The process is known as bleaching, and the damage cannot be reversed. “It’s quite challenging to witness the severity of this bleaching — it’s the worst we’ve ever seen,” declared Terry Hughes, director of a government-funded center for coral reef studies at James Cook University in Australia.
The life of the corals is also something that should worry us, because our own lives are at stake. “Losing a lot of corals has a broader ecological impact: species that eat the corals lose their food source; fish that would hide in the corals become more susceptible to predation from sharks,” explained Hughes.