Tuesday May 24, 2022
Tuesday May 24, 2022

Most Great Barrier Reef coral studied this year


Nepalnews
AP
2022 May 11, 11:30, Canberra
In this photo supplied by the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority (GBRMPA), a diver swims past coral on the Great Barrier Reef in Australia, Oct. 18, 2016. More than 90% of Great Barrier Reef coral surveyed in 2022 was bleached in the fourth such mass event in seven years in the world’s largest coral reef ecosystem, Australian government scientists said in its an annual report released late Tuesday, May 10, 2022. (Photo credit: AP)

More than 90% of Great Barrier Reef coral surveyed this year was bleached in the fourth such mass event in seven years in the world’s largest coral reef ecosystem, Australian government scientists said.

Bleaching is caused by global warming, but this is the reef’s first bleaching event during a La Niña weather pattern, which is associated with cooler Pacific Ocean temperatures, the Great Barrier Reef Marine Authority said in its an annual report released late Tuesday that found 91% of the areas surveyed were affected.

Bleaching in 2016, 2017 and 2020 damaged two-thirds of the coral in the famed reef off Australia’s eastern coast.

Coral bleaches as a heat stress response and scientists hope most of the coral will recover from the current event, said David Wachenfeld, chief scientist at the authority, which manages the reef ecosystem.

“The early indications are that the mortality won’t be very high,” Wachenfeld told Australian Broadcasting Corp. on Wednesday.


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