Researchers have pointed out the worst coral bleaching in Hawaii due to global warming.
Coral bleaching is bad news. It shows mankind the mirror. Our garbage that has littered the earth has caused everything from oil spills to global warming. If things continue at the current rate, pretty soon we would not have enough clean air to go around.
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And so what can we say about progress and development. Coral bleaching is something about which we ought to hang our heads in shame. And this despoliation of Nature is taking place from the Kure Atoll all the way till the Hawaii Archipelago.
Coral reefs are subject to bleaching due to rising temperatures throughout the world. And the period when the heat is on lasts from August to October off the coast of Hawaii. The coral reefs are very sensitive indeed. And they respond to changes in temperature that are as little as one to two degrees centigrade.
When the oceanic heat rises due to storms such as El Nino then the corals begin to show a massive bleaching effect. This is the third time such an ugly and defacing phenomenon has occurred in the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands.
It is algae of various colors that live in the coral. And they lend the corals their energy as well as their billion and one hues. The yellow or white colored disease that overcomes the usually multicolored nature of the coral reef is a tragedy of the highest order.
Why are we hell-bent on destroying beauty? And when the corals get bleached the results are a loss of energy as well as an end to their stability. They weaken and crumble. While in some areas the coral bleaching has already occurred, in others it is likely to occur in the future.
Yet last year there were some areas where signs of recovery were noted to have taken place. There appears to still be some hope. All is not lost. However, in other less fortunate areas, 85% to 100% of the coral reef has disintegrated and lost its previous rainbow-like nature.
The denatured coral reefs are upsetting the balance of fish and other marine life in the surrounding region as well. All of the ecological balance is about food webs. And when you knock off one of the dominoes, the rest of the animals and plants are affected equally in a chain reaction.
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This could go on to the bitter end. It is a fact that corals can bounce back from the bleaching experience. But sometimes the damage inflicted upon them is so bad that they never manage to recover from the shock.