Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Coral Reefs Exposed To Imminent Destruction From Climate Change

Date:
July 16, 2009
Source:
Zoological Society of London (ZSL)
Summary:
Leading ocean scientists and climate change experts agreed on a new level of atmospheric carbon dioxide that would need to be achieved to ensure the survival of coral reefs.

Coral reef with Anthias fish colony.
Credit: iStockphoto/Pawel Borowka

Coral reef survival is balancing on a knife edge as the combined effects of ocean acidification and ocean warming events threaten to push reefs to the brink of extinction this century, warned a meeting of leading scientists.

Organised by ZSL, the International Programme on the State of the Ocean (IPSO) and the Royal Society, the meeting identified the level of atmospheric CO2 predicted to result in the demise of coral reefs.

At anticipated rates of emission increase, it is expected that 450 ppm CO2 will be reached before 2050. At that point, corals may be on a path to extinction within a matter of decades.

By 2050, the remaining coral reefs could fall victim to ocean acidification. Such a catastrophe would not be confined to reefs, but could start of a domino-like sequence of the fall of other marine ecosystems.

Sir David Attenborough who co-chaired the meeting said “We must do all that is necessary to protect the key components of the life of our planet as the consequences of decisions made now will likely be forever as far as humanity is concerned”.

Scientific evidence shows that we have long passed the point at which the marine environment offers reefs a guaranteed future.

“The kitchen is on fire and it’s spreading round the house. If we act quickly and decisively we may be able to put it out before the damage becomes irreversible. That is where corals are now.” said Dr Alex Rogers of ZSL and IPSO.

The meeting was held to identify tipping points for corals and to expose the issues raised by the plight of coral reefs. A statement detailing these concerns will be submitted to the UN FCCC process currently underway.

Until now, world leaders negotiating emissions reductions have not taken the ocean into serious account, but with so much at risk, the oceans can no longer be ignored.

Now, there is every reason to believe that the oceans may in fact be the most vulnerable sector of our planet to climate change – with dire consequences for us all.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Zoological Society of London (ZSL). Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Zoological Society of London (ZSL). "Coral Reefs Exposed To Imminent Destruction From Climate Change." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 16 July 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/07/090706141006.htm>.
Zoological Society of London (ZSL). (2009, July 16). Coral Reefs Exposed To Imminent Destruction From Climate Change. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 1, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/07/090706141006.htm
Zoological Society of London (ZSL). "Coral Reefs Exposed To Imminent Destruction From Climate Change." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/07/090706141006.htm (accessed October 1, 2014).

Share This



More Plants & Animals News

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Attacking Superbugs

Attacking Superbugs

Ivanhoe (Oct. 1, 2014) — Two weapons hospitals can use to attack superbugs. Scientists in Ireland created a new gel resistant to superbugs, and a robot that can disinfect a room in minutes. Video provided by Ivanhoe
Powered by NewsLook.com
Cultural Learning In Wild Chimps Observed For The First Time

Cultural Learning In Wild Chimps Observed For The First Time

Newsy (Oct. 1, 2014) — Cultural transmission — the passing of knowledge from one animal to another — has been caught on camera with chimps teaching other chimps. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Earth Has Lost Half Its Vertebrate Wildlife Since 1970: WWF

Earth Has Lost Half Its Vertebrate Wildlife Since 1970: WWF

Newsy (Sep. 30, 2014) — A new study published by the World Wide Fund for Nature found that more than half of the world's wildlife population has declined since 1970. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Annual Dog Surfing Competition Draws California Crowds

Annual Dog Surfing Competition Draws California Crowds

AFP (Sep. 30, 2014) — The best canine surfers gathered for Huntington Beach's annual dog surfing competition, "Surf City, Surf Dog." Duration: 01:15 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins