The largest living thing on earth is no more. The Great Barrier Reef dead reports are true after scientists confirmed the natural wonder was tremendously affected by climate change and ocean acidification.
Environmental writer Rowan Jacobsen has declared one of the planet’s greatest wonders dead after outside elements killed the 25 million year-old beauty.
“The Great Barrier Reef of Australia passed away in 2016 after a long illness. It was 25 million years old,” Jacobsen wrote, notes Express.
The world’s largest coral reef system found off the coast of Queensland, Australia stretches over 2,300 kilometers and is considered one of the best natural wonders of the world. The coral system is home to more than 1,600 species of fish, 3,000 mollusks, 30 different species of whale and the largest population of dugong. However, according to scientists’ investigation, climate change and bleaching led to the death of the habitat.
Great Barrier Reef Dead due to Bleaching
According to Outside Online, bleaching had become a common practice in the late 90s, early 2000s and this led to the slow death of the 25 million reef. Climate change didn’t help either, as higher temperature waters cause the algae to produce more oxygen which is toxic to the corals.
“When stressful factors, particularly the warming up of ocean waters because of climate change, take effect, the corals expel the algae, leaving them to become transparent skeletons. Without the algae, the coral then simply starve,” Express explained.
Reports also reveal that no efforts to stop the death of the Great Barrier Reef were made. On the contrary, the Australian government forced the United Nations to remove a chapter about the reef’s imminent demise in a report about climate change. This was mainly due to the effect is has on tourism.
Findings of the research on the reef system revealed that “22 per cent of the coral on the Reef died due to the worst mass bleaching event on record.”
Should the world’s population continue to thrash nature, Great Barrier Reef dead wouldn’t be the only one dying.