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Monday, July 17, 2017

When corals die off, we die off

When corals die off, we die off

(CNN) - In 1998, the cruel heat of El Nino hit Seychelles hard. Sea surface temperatures rose around the Indian Ocean, bleaching 90% of coral reefs in the archipelago. Widespread flooding caused significant economic losses -- fishing and agriculture accounting for more than half of the total figure according to the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

The meteorological event, a combination of ocean heat redistribution and wind reversal in the Pacific, occurs approximately every two to seven years and has far-reaching consequences. The last El Nino in 2016 was similarly dreadful, reducing coral coverage on Seychelles' reefs from 50% to 5%, say local researchers.

El Nino is a phenomenon: a devastating, uncontrollable exception to the norm. With carefully managed conservation, Seychelles can survive its wild fluctuations. But not if global warming continues. As baseline temperatures creep up, the ecosystem loses its ability to recover. Eventually El Nino could prove terminal.

Climate change has become the day-to-day struggle for this tiny nation -- an island nation that faces erasure should the problem remain uncurbed. 

Full story at

Source: CNN

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