Dec 4, 2015

These Coral Reefs Are a ‘Crystal Ball’ For Future Climate Change

Kiribati
by
Brian Kahn
,
WxShift
A view of Christmas Island from space. Credit: NASA
A view of Christmas Island from space. Credit: NASA

Some might say [Christmas Island is] as close to the middle of nowhere as you can get. But it’s at the center of one of the biggest climate events in decades. A super El Niño has raised water temperatures to unprecedented levels and it’s causing a massive coral die off...When waters warm for an extended period, they essentially cook the algae that help coral grow. If water temperatures remain that high, coral can’t recover and die off. The world’s oceans are currently in the midst of the third major die off — termed bleaching by scientists — ever recorded and the hot waters around Christmas Island have been dealing with the heat for months.