archive -- on display -- contact -- profile -- host -- links -- cookbook

Coral Reefs
Thursday, Jan. 24, 2008 @ 5:14 p.m.

I listen to a LOT of different science program podcasts. Nova, CBC Quirks and Quarks, NPR Science Fridays among several others. So, basically I'm an armchair scientist, or a voyeur as it were. I was shocked the other day when one of the shows was reporting on climate change and coral reefs and they stated that by mid century coral reefs will be extinct. Yep, that's right, extinct. Dead and gone forever. The reason the reefs are in such peril is because of the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere and the fact that it dissolves into the ocean water where it becomes carbonic acid. Basically the oceans are acidifying. This acidification interrupts the coral's ability to regenerate because the acid reacts with the calcium that the coral needs to structure itself. So, the acid isn't going to outright kill the coral, it just won't be able to regenerate itself after storm damage or man made destruction. The show said they are not predicting the outright extinction of the reefs by 2050 only that the reefs will NOT be able to regenerate after this point, for millions of years. That the only reefs that will still exist will likely be in aquariums and in special preserves that undergo MASSIVE deacidification. How much of the Australian national budget will go towards that end? So the podcast went on to say that if we are serious, as a planet, about saving the reefs we would have to act within ten years. 10 years! If that doesn't drive home the point that 2050 is NOT a reasonable target date for change, I don't know what will. Were talking about the loss of an entire ecosystem from the face of the planet. I'm not trying to be sensational, but if an entire ecosystem becomes extinct what will be the effects on other ecosystems? Will there be a cataclysmic domino effect amongst other systems? The podcast went on to explain that the last time the oceans had this much carbon dioxide dissolved in them (were this acidic) was the period of time in which the dinosaurs went extinct and coral reefs were absent from the fossil record for 6 million years after that! I realize that this go around we have the added factor of human intervention as a possible help to the whole situation but I can't stress to you how dire I feel this situation is. Not only the senseless tragedy of the loss of the reefs but the question as to what will be next in the stack of dominoes to fall? And what will we, the human race, do to avert this calamity. I fear we will only stand by and watch till it is in fact to late for the reefs and ultimately, us.

0 comments so far

guest book


previous | next


yahoo messenger: James87106

[ CoffeeCup - HTML Editor & Web Design Software ]

This icon is in the titles of entries with images. Most images are taken with my Nikon Coolpix 775 or Coolpix 8800. All image editing accomplished with my trusty Corel Photopaint 12. Pictures taken by the author are attributed as such. All others are attributed where able.

Madrigle, 2000-2007

Site designed by Madrigle. All words are the intelectual property of Madrigle. Images are the property of Madrigle unless otherwise noted or used in the review of a movie or book.

birth of stars
Birth of Stars, Acrylic on Panel, 36" by 48" Collection of the artist

older entries

sticky note.
(Tuesday, Jan. 12, 2010)

(Thursday, Jan. 29, 2009)

The Finger Prints of God.
(Sunday, Nov. 09, 2008)

Hugh Everett's Quantum Physics is tripping me out. Multiple Universes. Infinite multitudes of me me and you.
(Tuesday, Oct. 21, 2008)

It's like getten screwed with your pants still on!
(Wednesday, Sept. 24, 2008)

Madrigle's Gallery

Cast and Crew

Toot My Own Horn

Once and Future favorite tunes
This is a Flickr badge showing photos in a set called botanicals and landscapes. Make your own badge here.