NOAA or the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and UQ or the University of Queensland gave confirmation that in early 2016, a coral bleaching would hit the Great Barrier Reef.
Hoegh-Guldberg, the professor of Global Change Institute of University of Queensland states that if worsening of these conditions is seen, the Great Barrier Reef would suffer from bleaching and later lead to mortality, a common effect seen with rise in sea temperatures.
This might happen owing to El Nino’s warming ocean effect. When the summers are really hot, corals get stressed and there is a likelihood of bleaching, stated the director of Coral reef conservation of The Nature Conservancy, Stephanie Wear.
Nowadays, scientists have warned that along with Hawaii even other parts of the world might face this risk. In the United States, the problems started in the month of August in South Florida and Florida Keys, although bleaching conditions are expected to be diminished there.
Bleaching is caused due to warm water and ocean temperatures become high owing to global warming and El Nino. It has also been said that including Hawaii, other corals too have been affected by ‘The Blob’ a huge mass of warm water. El Nino of the year 2010 had triggered the 2nd bleaching event. As of now, the bleaching of 1998 was worse, but it was the 2nd year of an El Nino. However, this is going to worst as areas like the Great Barrier Reef of Australia is predicted to be hit the most.
Usually, only 1/10th of 1 percent of the ocean floor of the world is covered by coral reefs, but approximately 25 percent of marine species is supported. Dead reefs are known to erode and degrade quickly, which means that there less protection of shoreline from storms and there is loss of habitat for marine life and fish. Serious impact is seen on the income of tourists and on people who depend on reefs for food.