Quantcast
Environmental News for a Healthier Planet and Life

Largest Coral Atoll in the World Lost 80 Percent of Its Coral to Bleaching

Climate

The largest coral atoll in the world, Kiritimati, has lost 80 percent of its coral in the past 10 months due to this year’s devastating coral bleaching event and another 15 percent is likely to die, scientists reported.

A reef in Kiritimati after the bleaching event. Photo credit: Kristina Tietjen, University of Victoria

The Pacific has been experiencing abnormally warm water temperatures for months, causing extreme stress to corals and the species that rely on them. This is the longest coral bleaching event ever recorded and scientists are becoming increasingly pessimistic that the affected reefs will recover.

Julia Baum from the University of Victoria described the atoll as a “horror show” and Kim Cobb of Georgia Tech called it “a wake-up call.” 

For a deeper dive:

NewsWashington Post

Commentary: Think Progress, Eric Holthaus column, The Conversation, Justin Marshall op-ed

For more climate change and clean energy news, you can follow Climate Nexus on Twitter and Facebook, and sign up for daily Hot News.

YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

Sardine Fishing Banned in Pacific Northwest as Stocks Hit Historic Low

USDA Silences Its Own Scientists’ Warnings About the Dangerous Effects of Pesticides on Bees

How an Army of Ocean Farmers Is Starting an Economic Revolution

Unlocking the Potential of Sustainable Fishing

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

Heavy industry on the lower Mississippi helps to create dead zones. AJ Wallace on Unsplash.

Cutting out coal-burning and other sources of nitrogen oxides (NOx) from heavy industry, electricity production and traffic will reduce the size of the world's dead zones along coasts where all fish life is vanishing because of a lack of oxygen.

Read More Show Less

Despite the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, which has restricted the ability to gather in peaceful assembly, a Canadian company has moved forward with construction of the controversial Keystone XL pipeline, according to the AP.

Read More Show Less
Sponsored
A gas flare from the Shell Chemical LP petroleum refinery illuminates the sky on August 21, 2019 in Norco, Louisiana. Drew Angerer / Getty Images.

Methane levels in the atmosphere experienced a dramatic rise in 2019, preliminary data released Sunday shows.

Read More Show Less
A retired West Virginia miner suffering from black lung visits a doctor for tests. Andrew Lichtenstein / Corbis via Getty Images

In some states like West Virginia, coal mines have been classified as essential services and are staying open during the COVID-19 pandemic, even though the close quarters miners work in and the known risks to respiratory health put miners in harm's way during the spread of the coronavirus.

Read More Show Less
Solar panel installations and a wind turbine at the Phu Lac wind farm in southern Vietnam's Binh Thuan province on April 23, 2019. MANAN VATSYAYANA / AFP via Getty Images

Renewable energy made up almost three quarters of all new energy capacity added in 2019, data released Monday by the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) shows.

Read More Show Less