Nature never fails to amaze us with its beauty. Coral Reefs, an ecosystem found under water, have always been so tempting that one can’t get enough of them but regrettably they are declining over time and need urgent protection.
Let me first highlight its importance so that we can evidently
understand the urgency to save them.
AND SHELTER: Hundreds of millions of people count on coral reefs for their
food. Also, reefs sustain a number of fish species.
MATERIAL: The skeletal structure in which reefs are held together is due
to the presence of Calcium Carbonate (or limestone) which can be extracted from
reefs for making cement.
SAVING DRUGS: Coral Reefs can help cure cancer, HIV, and
many more diseases.
Reefs proliferate tourism for activities like Scuba Diving and Snorkeling and
also generate employment.
SHORELINES: The natural construction of reefs is such that they shield the
shorelines from natural calamities like storm and flood and prevent erosion as
Coral reefs are degrading at a rapid rate and according to a study, more than 90% of the world's coral reefs will die by 2050 if the current
Today many Coral Reefs are endangered due to natural phenomena
such as hurricanes.
But we humans are immensely responsible for the fall.
Following are certain
human acts accountable for the exploitation:
1. OVERFISHING: Overfishing of herbivorous
fishes that survive on seaweeds results in upsurge of seaweeds, which kills
2. HARMFUL FISHING TECHNIQUES: Detrimental
fishing techniques like trawling and using explosives destroy corals.
3. CARELESS TOURISM: Tourists harm corals by
touching, polluting and breaking them.
4. AQUARIUM TRADE: Coral Reefs are used to
fulfil the growing demand of aquariums.
5. CLIMATE CHANGE: Owing to Global Warming, our
environment is at risk. As reported by IPCC ,
Global Warming of 1.5℃ would have a catastrophic effect on Coral Reefs and even
higher if the temperature rises by 2℃.
6. INCREASED CARBON DIOXIDE: Due
to Global Warming, CO₂ level is soaring which in turn increases acidity level
making it difficult for water to carry Calcium Carbonate.
7. CORAL BLEACHING: Global Warming provokes
whitening of Corals known as bleaching which can result in their mortality.
8. WATER POLLUTION: The pollution from land
OF FERTILISERS AND PESTICIDES: Such chemicals pollute our oceans and seas
to a great extent.
10. SURGED USE OF PLASTICS: Plastic
sothers Corals by blocking the required sunlight.
11. PREDATORS: Predators rely on coral reefs
for food and Corals will be ruined if they exceed in population.
12. CORALS AS GIFTS: Many jewellery and home decor
items are rendered from Coral Reefs. It is one of the major reasons for their
REEF-UNFRIENDLY SUNSCREEN: Certain chemicals in sunscreen harm the
After having a myopic look on the causes of decline, we have
unknowingly learnt what to do next.
Wherever you are, close to the sea or miles away, you can always
take a step forward to ward off the danger on Coral Reefs.
Let’s take a quick look on how it can be done:
Reduce the use of single use plastics.
Use toothpastes and other products that are
organic and come in reusable glass jars or biodegradable packaging and use
Don’t buy packaged fruits and veggies.
Divers should not touch reefs.
Stop disposing chemicals into waterways.
Don’t gift corals.
❏ Choose seafood wisely.
Do everything you can do to prevent climate
Eat less of red meat as it is directly
linked to Global Warming.
Be careful while boating as your anchor can
take away corals with it.
Remove make-up with reusable cloth instead
of cotton pads.
Don’t litter in waterways.
Use only those fertilizers and pesticides
that are reef-friendly.
Aware more and more people about it.
Making small changes in your life can lead
to a radical change on Earth! Let’s do it together.