NOAA's Coral Reef Watch and Partners Announce 3rd Global Bleaching Event
October 9, 2015 - As record ocean temperatures cause widespread coral bleaching across Hawaii, NOAA scientists confirm similar warm ocean waters are now causing bleaching across much of the northern Caribbean and may expand, prompting the declaration of the third global coral bleaching event on record. "The coral bleaching and disease, brought on by climate change and coupled with events like the current El Niño, are the largest and most pervasive threats to coral reefs around the world," said Mark Eakin, NOAA's Coral Reef Watch coordinator. "As a result, we are losing huge areas of coral across the U.S., as well as internationally. What really has us concerned is this event has been going on for more than a year and our long-range model projections indicate the bleaching is likely to last well into 2016, when it may be even worse."
This announcement stems from the latest NOAA Coral Reef Watch satellite coral bleaching monitoring products, and was confirmed through reports from partner organizations with divers working on affected reefs, especially the XL Catlin Seaview Survey and ReefCheck. NOAA Coral Reef Watch’s bleaching outlook, which forecasts the potential for coral bleaching worldwide several months in the future, predicted this global event in July 2015.
Coral Reef Watch - Bleaching Projections
NOAA Coral Reef Watch - 6 Oct 2015
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