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Environmental News for a Healthier Planet and Life
Coral reefs around the world are struggling. Signs of stony coral tissue loss disease on symmetrical brain coral (Pseudodiploria strigosa). Florida Department of Environmental Protection

Stony corals provide habitat for an eye-popping one-fourth of the ocean's species. They serve as the centerpiece of a rich and diverse ecosystem, which is why their recent behavior has scientists concerned. New research shows that stony corals around the world are hunkering down into survival mode as they prepare for a mass extinction event, according to a new study published in Scientific Reports.

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Dominican Republic: Tourism killing coral reefs | Global Ideas

An estimated 90% of the Dominican Republic's coral reefs have been destroyed, creating a knock-on effect for the entire coastal ecosystem. Local businesses and conservationists are now working to reverse this damage.

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A coral and fish community at the Great Barrier Reef, northeast of Port Douglas, Queensland, Australia, on Aug. 28, 2018. Francois Gohier / VWPics / Universal Images Group via Getty Images

Researchers released a sobering study this week showing that all of the world's coral reefs may be lost to the climate crisis by 2100.

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Ambassadors with the #SuperCoralPlay campaign. Nicolette Amico / Newlink

Only the Kansas City Chiefs and the San Francisco 49ers will get to play in Super Bowl 54 in Miami Sunday. But anyone can make a #SuperCoralPlay.

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A new report spotlights a U.N. estimate that at least 275 million people rely on healthy coral reefs. A sea turtle near the Heron Island in the Great Barrier Reef is seen above. THE OCEAN AGENCY / XL CATLIN SEAVIEW SURVEY

By Jessica Corbett

In a new report about how the world's coral reefs face "the combined threats of climate change, pollution, and overfishing" — endangering the future of marine biodiversity — a London-based nonprofit calls for greater global efforts to end the climate crisis and ensure the survival of these vital underwater ecosystems.

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Branching staghorn coral, acropora, is completely bleached during the 2017 coral bleaching event on the Great Barrier Reef. Picture was taken on Pixie Reef. Brett Monroe Garner / Moment / Getty Images

The Great Barrier Reef, a natural wonder that once teemed with life, just experienced a major coral bleaching event, according to scientists who conducted aerial surveys over hundreds of individual reefs, as The Guardian reported.

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Aerial view of Cancun coastline. Dronepicr / Wikipedia / CC BY 3.0

Buying insurance is one way to protect something of value, such as a car or a home. And now businesses in Cancun, Mexico, have insured a coral reef.

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The icebreaker Polar Star in Antarctica. Ville Miettinen / The Revelator / CC BY-NC 2.0

By Tara Lohan

Part of Joellen Russell's job is to help illuminate the deep darkness — to shine a light on what's happening beneath the surface of the ocean. And it's one of the most important jobs in the world right now.

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Coral restoration in Guam. U.S. Pacific Fleet / CC BY-NC 2.0

By Erica Cirino

Visit a coral reef off the coast of Miami or the Maldives and you may see fields of bleached white instead of a burst of colors.

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Half half bleached coral, great barrier reef. JAYNE JENKINS / CORAL REEF IMAGE BANK

Australian wildlife cannot catch a break.

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An ovenbird (Seiurus aurocapillus), one of the target species of a broadcast which hopes to attract various species. Grayson Smith / USFWS

By Lorraine Boissoneault

It's a quiet May morning on the Hawaiian island of Kauai. We're high on a cliff inside the fences of the Nihoku Ecosystem Restoration Project, with only the sound of the wind rushing past our ears and the crash of waves breaking on the shoreline far beneath. Only the slightest hints of animal cries reach our ears — until ecologist Lindsay Young turns on a loudspeaker. Then the air fills with the breathy squawks and raucous chirps of seabirds.

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Environmental News for a Healthier Planet and Life
A loudspeaker on a damaged reef attracts fish. Tim Gordon / University of Exeter

A team of British and Australian scientists have discovered an innovative way to help coral reefs recover from the climate crisis and other human-caused damage: loudspeakers.

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Pixabay

By John R. Platt

With the coronavirus continuing to spread and self-isolation becoming the norm, it feels more important than ever to embrace the power and beauty of nature. Sure, we can't travel as much these days, but the modern world can still bring the natural world to us.

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Rebecca Albright in the California Academy of Science's darkroom where they are working on coral spawning and restoration efforts. Tara Lohan

By Tara Lohan

Visitors walk slowly through a room of dimmed lights and glowing tanks that bring the mysteries of the sea into plain view. The Steinhart Aquarium at the California Academy of Sciences in San Francisco is home to 900 different species — everything from brightly colored reef fish to prickly sea urchins, even an albino alligator named Claude.

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Logging state in the U.S. is seen representing some of the consequences humans will face in the absence of concrete action to stop deforestation, pollution and the climate crisis. Mark Newman / Lonely Planet Images / Getty Images

Talk is cheap, says the acting executive secretary of the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity, who begged governments around the world to make sure that 2020 is not another year of conferences and empty promises, but instead is the year to take decisive action to stop the mass extinction of wildlife and the destruction of habitat-sustaining ecosystems, as The Guardian reported.

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Lizard Island, Great Barrier Reef. The Ocean Agency / Xl Catlin Seaview Survey

Marine heat waves are increasing in frequency, duration and intensity, which spell trouble for corals, according to new research from scientists working at the Great Barrier Reef.

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A healthy coral reef at Swains Island, American Samoa. NOAA / NMFS / PIFSC / CRED, Oceanography Team / CC BY 2.0

By Cody Clements

Coral reefs are home to so many species that they often are called "the rainforests of the seas." Today they face a daunting range of threats, including ocean warming and acidification, overfishing and pollution. Worldwide, more than one-third of all coral species are at risk of extinction.

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Pekic / E+ / Getty Images

Whether reporting on sea level rise, crop failures, or natural disasters, journalists are often the bearers of bleak news about global warming.

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Lesions (white) eat into the tissue of maze corals on Flat Cay reef, near St. Thomas in the U.S. Virgin Islands. The lesions are caused by a new and deadly disease that's spreading through the Caribbean. Marilyn Brandt
A baby burrowing owl perched outside its burrow on Marco Island, Florida. LagunaticPhoto / iStock / Getty Images Plus

Burrowing owls, which make their homes in small holes in the ground, are having a rough time in Florida. That's why Marco Island on the Gulf Coast passed a resolution to pay residents $250 to start an owl burrow in their front yard, as the Marco Eagle reported.

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