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(Article #1) World's oceans facing biggest coral die-off in history, scientists

warn
A third global bleaching of coral reefs is underway following a massive and persistent underwater
heatwave
Scientists have confirmed the third-ever global bleaching of coral reefs is under way and warned it
could see the biggest coral die-off in history.Since 2014, a massive underwater heatwave, driven by
climate change, has caused corals to lose their brilliance and die in every ocean. By the end of this
year 38% of the worlds reefs will have been affected. About 5% will have died forever.
But with a very strong El Nio driving record global temperatures and a huge patch of hot water,
known as the Blob, hanging obstinately in the north-western Pacific, things look far worse again for
2016.Coral reefs worth four times as much as UK economy, 'Earth Index' finds For coral scientists such
as Dr Mark Eakin , the coordinator of the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Coral
Reef Watch programme, this is the cataclysm that has been feared since the first global bleaching
occurred in 1998 .The fact that 2016s bleaching will be added on top of the bleaching that has
occurred since June 2014 makes me really worried about what the cumulative impact may be. It very
well may be the worst period of coral bleaching weve seen, he told the Guardian.The only two
previous such global events were in 1998 and 2010, when every major ocean basin experienced
bleaching. Professor Ove Hoegh-Guldberg , director of the Global Change Institute at the University of
Queensland, Australia, said the ocean was now primed for the worst coral bleaching event in
history.The development of conditions in the Pacific looks exactly like what happened in 1997. And of
course following 1997 we had this extremely warm year, with damage occurring in 50 countries at
least and 16% of corals dying by the end of it, he said. Many of us think this will exceed the damage
that was done in 1998.

ARTICLE #2 -15,000 sq km of coral reef could be lost in


current mass bleaching, say scientists
Noaa predicts third-ever global bleaching event could cause a 6% global reduction in coral reefs in less than two years. More
than a third of coral reefs affected may be destroyed forever
A massive coral bleaching event currently ravaging coral reefs across the globe could destroy thousands of square kilometres of
coral cover forever, US government scientists have said.In figures exclusively released to the Guardian, scientists from the US
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (Noaa) said about 12% of the worlds reefs have suffered bleaching in the last
year. Just under half of these, an area of 12,000 sq km of coral, may be lost forever.But the
devastation is only getting started. The event could continue well into 2016. Noaa announced on
Monday that the western Atlantic is about to heat up, turning the corals of the Caribbean bone
white. When this occurs, bleaching will have hit every tropical ocean basin on Earth since June
last year

#3- Mass coral bleaching to occur in early 2016


with significant impact on Great Barrier Reef:
experts
Scientists have predicted that the world's third mass coral bleaching
will happen early next year and damage about 38 per cent of the
world's coral reefs.A study undertaken by the US National Ocean Atmospheric Administration
and the University of Queensland (UQ) has forecast that the event could be the worst on
record due to increasingly high ocean temperatures.Bleaching is a phenomenon that turns
corals white or fades their colours.The cause is consistently warmer than average ocean

temperatures.UQ's Global Change Institute director Professor Ove Hoegh-Guldberg said the
impact on the Great Barrier Reef would be significant."If conditions continue to worsen, the
Great Barrier Reef is set to suffer from widespread coral bleaching and subsequent mortality,
the most common effect of rising sea temperatures," Professor Hoegh-Guldberg said.The
first mass coral bleaching occurred in 1998, when about 16 per cent of the world's reefs
were affected.Up to 10 per cent of the corals on Queensland's Great Barrier Reef died.The
Great Barrier Reef narrowly avoided a worse event in 2010 after several storms cooled the
coastline.Global Change Institute's Doctor Tyrone Ridgway said the potential 2016 event was
going to be "potentially worse in terms of temperature than what we saw in 1998"."Coral
bleaching doesn't necessarily mean that corals are going to die," he said."If the stress does
dissipate fairly rapidly after the event there's a good chance the corals could recover but
until we experience the temperature into the summer we're not going to know what the
extent is going to be."Queensland Environment Minister Steven Miles said the Government
could help lessen the impact."The actions that we're taking as part of the Great Barrier Reef
long-term sustainability plan will better improve the reef's resilience to these kind of
warming events," he said.
"But sadly if the world doesn't do what we need to do to limit global warming then this is
going to get worse."

4TH ARTICLE- Billionaire Conservationist's Yacht Damages Coral Reef

Paul Allen's vessel Tatoosh has allegedly damaged coral in the Cayman
Islands, although that's not the biggest threat to the reef.
By Brian Clark Howard
PUBLISHED JANUARY 29, 2016
Billionaire Paul Allen has given millions of dollars to conservation causes over the years,
including ones that support ocean exploration and preservation. But earlier this month, his
300-foot yacht Tatoosh allegedly caused significant damage to a protected coral reef in the
Cayman Islands.The anchor and chain of the vessel allegedly damaged 14,000 square feet
of reef on January 14, according to Cayman Islands' Department of Environment. The
incident occurred in a protected area of Grand Cayman called the West Bay replenishment
zone, which is near popular scuba diving sites.The M/V Tatoosh was "moored in a position
explicitly directed by the local Port Authority," Paul Allen's Seattle-based company, Vulcan,
says in a statement on its website. However, the winds reportedly shifted, moving the boat
toward the reef."When its crew was alerted by a diver that her anchor chain may have
impacted coral in the area, the crew promptly, and on their own accord, relocated their
position to ensure the reef was protected," Vulcan says (company spokespeople have
declined to speak with us beyond the statement)Allen was not on board the 300-foot yacht
(his second biggest), which has five decks and is staffed by a crew of 30. (It is reportedly the
49th largest yacht in the world.) Vulcan says the company is working with local authorities to
determine what happened and to help restore the damage.The incident was relatively
unusual, since Grand Cayman is a popular boating destination and clear guidelines usually
keep people from damaging the reef, says Carrie Manfrino, a coral ecologist who founded
the Central Caribbean Marine Institute, which operates a field station in the Cayman
Islands."We've come a long way from the day when anchors could just be thrown in the
water anywhere," says Manfrino.Michael P. Lesser, a marine scientist at the University of
New Hampshire who has worked in the Caymans, agrees, although he says ship anchors and
groundings "continue to be a source of damage to coral reefs around the world." Guidelines

on best practices have come a long way, but more work needs to be done, says Lesser, who
is a National Geographic explorer."I know Paul Allen funds great projects on coral reefs and
regeneration, so this is really ironic and a terrible thing," says Manfrino.