Regardless of if you believe in global warming or not, here are just a few horrible facts on what is going on with our oceans and the marine life:
1. 25-30% of the worlds coral/reef are seriously degraded or already dead.
2. 25% of all species in the ocean spend at least part of their lives in the coral/reef ecosystem.
3. Rising water temperatures is causing mass coral bleaching! This happens when the coral is stressed. When stressed the reef expels the symbiotic algae that gives the coral its nutrients and brilliant color. Without this algae the coral dies thus leaving the reef white, starving and eventually dead. This bleaching in the past happened only about every 10 years or so which was a cycle of life but has now become a much more regular occurrence further threatening the reefs existence.
4. Runoffs are fertilizing algae which further upsets the reefs ecosystem by making the algae grow fast and ultimately smothering the coral.
5. Overfishing is removing the reef grazers that keeps the reefs algae in check from overgrowing and ultimately smothering the reef.
6. Ocean acidification is destroying the existing reefs and affecting the reefs ability to produce new colonies. The ocean should have a Ph of around 8.2 near the surface. It’s now between 8.1 and 8.0 and is predicted to be at 7.8 by 2100 which would kill all or most of the worlds reefs.
7. Healthy reefs can protect coastal regions from storm surges. Atolls rely on deposits of sediment from coral and other marine organisms often dumped onshore via storms. This keeps the atolls above water as coral is like a construction site, if the building material runs out then all building will stop and the atoll can no longer sustain itself leaving a sinking atoll.