The Great Barrier Reef is the largest living thing on Earth, it was also recently pronounced dead…incorrectly. It is so big that it is visible from outer space, I feel like I have to talk about space very soon. I love the stars and planets almost as much as I love trees (See my first post). But let’s get to this week’s captivation. Although the most amazingly beautiful ecosystem did lose 22 percent of its’ reefs this year due to bleaching, it is still a far cry away from dead.
Not to say that this year’s Great Barrier Reef disaster wasn’t the worst such event on record, stated by its marine park authority after the misleading “obituary” was released Oct. 11. The eulogies on social media came immediately following writer Rowan Jacobsen’s “Great Barrier Reef (25 million BC -2016).” The mass amount of pissed off humans did however have good intent thinking the death notice was legitimate. I can admit I was one of the believers. However, I did ask my boyfriend who was the one that informed me… “Wait is this from Facebook?”
But the issue here really is, the effects will no doubt be felt for decades. The bleaching is caused by climate change, and has killed a quarter of the coral in the reef. Coral bleaches when the water is too warm for too long. I found this research in an article, “The Great Barrier Reef: a catastrophe laid bare,” in The Guardian, BUT I urge you to look this stuff up for yourself.
We live in a country where our Republican presidential candidate doesn’t believe in global warming. Very few of the GOP nominees acknowledged it at all (Done with speaking of politics I promise, you can continue reading). But come on, even though this obituary was a bit premature, let’s focus all that hatred we had on Twitter and do something about it before its too late.
I feel as though I should mention now that I have never physically seen the Great Barrier Reef in person. Just photos. And I also would like to let you know I know how cliché this is…but don’t you want your kids or kids in the future to be able to see a photo.
There is hope when the coral begins to bleach. The water must quickly return its temperatures to normal before the coral dies. If this save does occur, it will then be about a decade before the coral can begin to recover. Even then, recovery depends on if the reef is free of stressors such as water pollution. So basically we are coming at one of the seven natural wonders of the world from all angles.
Lastly, if I didn’t pull at those heartstrings yet, maybe some of you are thinking “Aw, how sad…coral is pretty cool,” instead of “Let’s monitor the products that flow into the water system, pullet the ocean and harm the coral reefs!” By the way we can be affecting the coral reef’s ecosystem even living thousands of miles away. Let’s mention that corals are marine animals and they have friends. An array of colorful animals that inhabit the corals including fish, sharks, rays, whales and dolphins make up the most complex ecosystem on the planet. No corals. No friends.
So let’s all work really hard on this and use really healthy lawn products so we wont pollute the ocean. There are plenty of other ways to help, if interested check out the link I’ve left below! Also, if there’s a final thought I can wish for anyone reading this to understand, it’s please don’t believe that, “climate change is a hoax invented by the Chinese.”