‘Dead’ Giant Coral Reef Springs Back to Life!
Written by New York Times
Climate alarmists claim increasing levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide will cause oceans to become more acidic which, when combined with ocean warming, will decimate coral reefs unable to adapt to climate change. Time and again this fear has been shown to be misplaced. Most recently, The New York Times reported the Coral Castles reef between Hawaii and Fiji, which had been declared dead in 2003, is now teaming with life.
While 2015 was declared the hottest year on record by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and other institutes, researchers studying Coral Castles in early August 2016 “were greeted with a vista of bright greens and purples — unmistakable signs of life,” noted Jan Witting, the expedition’s chief scientist. “Everything looked just magnificent.”
Coral Castles’ recovery is not the first “miracle’”coral resurrection. As Watts Up With That points out, a 1998 heat wave caused corals worldwide to bleach, “killing” nearly 16% of the world’s corals, the vast majority of the relatively hardy Porites coral in French Polynesia’s Rangiroa lagoon included. Marine biologist Peter Mumby, who studies the reef, predicted it would take the Porites nearly 100 years to recover; they instead recovered in 15 years. “Our projections were completely wrong,” Mumby said “Sometimes it is really nice to be proven wrong as a scientist, and this was a perfect example of that.”
While the 1998 heat wave appeared to kill corals on the outer reefs of Palau in the western Pacific Ocean, by 2005 they’d made a full recovery. Those corals have subsequently survived a category-five cyclone and bleaching events in 2010 and 2011.
Indeed, so many coral reefs worldwide are recovering from bleaching, one Hawaiian coral researcher labeled the recovery the “The Phoenix Effect,” with corals springing back to life from virtually imperceptible fragments of themselves.
No one knows for sure what climate changes coral reefs can adapt to, but reefs have survived millions of years through far more dramatic changes than we are currently experiencing.