Bleaching Phenomenon Affecting 91 Percent of the World's Largest Coral Reef Ecosystem

Published on: 16 May 2022 09:15 AM
by KnowESG

According to the Great Barrier Reef Marine Authority (GBRMA) in its snapshot report of summer 2021-22, the Great Barrier Reef, after being hit by three marine heatwaves, experienced its sixth mass bleaching on record.

All this succession of events did not exceed a seven-year interval, and a survey led by Australian government scientists confirms that almost all of the coral has been lost to bleaching.

Bleaching is a global warming-induced heat stress response and, according to the authorities, this is the reef's first bleaching event during a La Nina weather pattern, which is associated with cooler Pacific Ocean temperatures.

"This is heartbreaking. This is deeply troubling," Simon Bradshaw, a researcher at the Climate Council, said. Bradshaw also insisted that, according to the report, the reef's survival is dependent on drastic global emission cuts within the decade.

Following the final heatwave in March 2022, surveys were conducted. They showed that the stress that causes bleached coral can still be reversed, making coral recover and regain its colour as the ocean cools after summer, as it did in 2020 when much coral survived a mass bleaching event.

Source : Sky News