Dec 2, 2015

Warm El Nino Water Killing Pacific Corals

Eric Niiler
Discovery News
Coral bleaching. Credit: Thinkstock
Coral bleaching. Credit: Thinkstock

Coral reefs across the Pacific Ocean are being wiped out by this year’s massive El Nino -- a global phenomenon that may be intensified by the effects of climate change. Scientists just back from tropical areas of the Pacific say they are seeing up to half the reefs in some locations killed by bleaching...“We weren’t expecting to see the levels of the destruction that we saw on the reef,” said Kim Cobb, professor of Earth and atmospheric sciences at Georgia Tech...Cobb has published several research papers in recent years linking the intensity El Nino events to climate change. “The atmosphere is more sensitive to El Nino anomalies under climate change,” Cobb said.