85 percent of reefs in the Coral Triangle under threat
July 09, 2012
Reefs in the Coral Triangle are at substantially more threat than the global average of 60 percent, due to local human activities, a new CTSP-funded report has found.
Reefs at Risk Revisited in the Coral Triangle shows that the greatest local threats to reefs in the countries that make up the Coral Triangle —Indonesia, Malaysia, Papua New Guinea, the Philippines, Solomon Islands, and Timor-Leste—are overfishing, watershed-based pollution, and coastal development. When these threats are combined with recent coral bleaching, prompted by rising ocean temperatures, the percent of reefs rated as threatened increases to more than 90 percent.
“Reefs at Risk Revisited in the Coral Triangle is an important contribution to the mission of CTSP, which is to assist the governments of the six Coral Triangle countries in making the critical decisions related to protecting their marine resources,” said Maurice Knight, Chief of Party for CTSP and a contributing author. “The region-wide perspective on the status of coral reefs as depicted in this report demonstrates the urgency of the situation and the need for immediate action.”
Healthy reefs are more likely to survive the negative effects of climate change, such as coral bleaching caused by higher ocean temperatures or reduced coral growth rates due to increased ocean acidity. Tackling the local threats first will buy reefs time until the global community can reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
The report was developed by the World Resources Institute (WRI) in close collaboration with CTSP and will inform the activities of the Coral Triangle Initiative on Coral Reefs, Fisheries and Food Security (CTI-CFF).
To download the Reefs at Risk Revisited in the Coral Triangle report click here (or visit: www.wri.org/publication/reefs-at-risk-revisited-coral-triangle).
Read Katie Reyar Author\'s blog here: http://insights.wri.org/news/2012/07/new-report-reveals-threats-worlds-most-important-reefs
(Pictured: Jari Island, a particular biodiverse reef near Gizo Island, Solomon Islands. © James Morgan / CTSP)