The world’s most important coral region is in danger of extinction by the end of the century. Already, 40% of reefs in the Coral Triangle have been lost, according to BBC. The Coral Triangle is shared between Indonesia and five other south-east Asian nations and contains 75% of the world’s coral species. If the world’s richest coral reef is destroyed, it is estimated that by 2099, one hundred million people in southeast Asia -people who rely greatly on fish- will be without food. This is thought to be the worst case scenario.
According to an article authored by 17 scientists (including the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration), global warming could kill off the world’s coral reefs by 2050. Their predicted worst case scenario states that carbon dioxide levels will rise above 500 ppm causing our ocean temperature to increase more than 5.4 degrees. This would cause the reefs to crumble, disappearance of half our sea-life, red, brown, and green algae take over, increase in plankton blooms, and water quality dramatically decreasing. Increased emissions of carbon dioxide into the air (and in turn our oceans), ocean acidification, overfishing, increasing numbers of “bleaching events”, have already done massive damage to our ocean’s coral reefs.
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