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Coral reefs’ very survival is at stake, warns UNESCO in bid to boost resilience — Global Issues


That’s a clear message from UNESCOthe company is behind an emergency bid to protect these natural marine wonders, 29 of which are on the agency’s list of protected World Heritage Sites.

Our oceans are becoming warmer due to increasing global carbon dioxide emissions.

Need to drastically cut emissions

The latest Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) data, which also states that Countries must significantly reduce their carbon emissions, in order to meet their 2015 targets. Paris Agreement.

Most coral reefs face many other pressuresfrom pollution to overfishing and habitat destruction.

UNESCO’s plan with its partners is to reduce these threats and promote sustainable management of fragile marine coral reefs by supporting local communities.

Corals thrive in Fiji.

© Reef Image Bank / Tom Vierus

Corals thrive in Fiji.

‘Resilient reef’

Overall, the agency’s plan aims to work with 19 World Heritage-listed reefs found in developing countries, with funding from Global Fund for Coral Reefs.

The development is built on the success of the Elastic Reef Initiative Launched in 2018.

Over the past four years, researchers have worked on four World Heritage reef test sites in Australia, Belize, New Caledonia and Palau.

The initiative has demonstrated that local pressures can be alleviated by empowering local communities and helping them adapt their incomes and livelihoods to our changing climate.

“Global warming means that local coral reef conservation activities are is no longer enough to protect the world’s most important coral reef ecosystems. But a healthy, resilient reef can regenerate after a bleaching incident and survive,” explains Fanny Douvere, head of UNESCO’s Marine Programme.



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