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Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Great Barrier Reef bleaching for second consecutive year

The Great Barrier Reef, a 1,400-mile World Heritage Site along Australia’s east coast, is in trouble, and that trouble is growing to proportions that might soon become impossible to alleviate. The colorful corals that make the site an attractive destination are undergoing a second consecutive year of bleaching and the effects of the bleaching in 2016 are significantly worse than previously estimated.
In an announcement Monday, the Australian government’s Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority said an estimated 29 percent of shallow water corals died due to bleaching — caused by rising ocean temperatures — during 2016. The number was revised upward from 22 percent, which was the estimate given in mid-2016.

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