Posted by: Peter Black | October 16, 2008

A World of Hurt for Coral Reefs

Coral Bleaching Worldwide

Map 1 (Interactive):
Coral Bleaching

bleaching1.jpg

As reported this July, a third of all corals in the world face extinction, much of it due to bleaching, a process directly related to higher water temperatures, and global warming.

Of course, I was interested in whether or not this was a local or global phenomenon, and specifically where bleaching has been happening. A simple web seach found exactly what I was looking for. First, I found that NOAA keeps tabs on current bleaching hotspots. Then I found a site called Reefbase, who maintains a global database of reef conditions. I grabbed their data, and produced this user friendly map below. For anyone who appreciates diving, snorkeling, and the beauty of the coral reef, this map is a serious wake up call.

Click on the image below to begin interacting with the map. You can zoom in and out, pan around, and hover over the points to identify them.

Yellow = Low bleaching levels
Orange = Medium
Red = High


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