Coral Reef

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Post by Artgreen on Thu Feb 26, 2015 12:01 am

Coral Reef Most_coral
An estimated 20 percent of the world's coral reefs are damaged beyond recovery and about half of the remaining coral reefs are under risk of collapse.

Did you know that, per unit area, coral reefs support more species than any other marine environment? Reefs also rival rainforests in the amount of biodiversity they support. Thousands of creatures rely on coral reefs for their survival. Hidden beneath the ocean waters, reefs are also some of the oldest ecosystems on the planet, reflecting thousands of years of history. Although individual coral polyps are tiny, they create the largest living structures on earth—some reefs are visible from space!

Healthy coral reefs are valuable to you
Did you know that approximately 500 million people worldwide depend upon reefs? In fact, 30 million are virtually totally dependent upon reefs. Coral ecosystems are a source of food for millions; protect coastlines from storms and erosion; provide habitat, spawning and nursery grounds for economically important fish species; provide jobs and income to local economies from fishing, recreation, and tourism; are a source of new medicines, and are hotspots of marine biodiversity. These values contribute approximately $29.8 billion to world economies each year. Continued decline of reefs will have alarming consequences for people worldwide.

Humanity's actions are threatening coral’s survival
An estimated 20 percent of the world’s reefs are damaged beyond recovery and about half of the remaining coral reefs are under risk of collapse.  The top threats to coral reefs—climate change, unsustainable fishing, and land-based pollution—are all due to human activities. These threats—combined with other threats like coral disease; tropical storms; tourism and recreation; vessel damage; marine debris, and aquatic invasive species—compound upon each other, sometimes making conservation efforts more difficult.


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