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Home / Science / Australia invests millions in the restoration and protection of the Great Barrier Reef

Australia invests millions in the restoration and protection of the Great Barrier Reef



The new funding is part of an ambitious conservation plan in which the Australian Government will work with the Great Barrier Reef Foundation to improve and monitor the long-term health of the reef.

Described by the Australian Government as the largest single animal species The money will be used to improve the water quality, to control a large carnivore, and to expand the reef restoration

The Great Barrier Reef is home to the world's largest collection of coral reefs with about 400 Coral species and 1,500 species of fish. It also houses a number of endangered species, including the large green turtle and the dugong.

Australian Environment Minister Josh Frydenberg told reporters after the unveiling Sunday that the reef is under heavy pressure, but these challenges could

"The more we understand about the reef, the better we can protect it," Frydenberg said cited by the Australian Broadcasting Corporation.

"Millions of dollars will flow into science and better data management and to test the impact on the reef," he added.

"Shocking" Bleach Values ​​

Air measurements taken in April of last year revealed that more than two thirds of the corals in the Barrier Reef had experienced "shocking" amounts of bleach.

Coral bleaching occurs when an increase in sea temperatures causes the excretion of algae, which grows within the corals, whitens the reefs and eliminates their main source of energy.

Back-to-back bleaching events in 201

6 and 2017 have destroyed 1,500 km (900 miles) of UNESCO World Heritage.

Prior to 2016, in the last two decades, 1998 and 2002, there were only two bleaching events along the Great Barrier Reef.

Last year's bleaching event, the worst so far, hit mainly the north of the reef Recent damage has been affecting the middle sections, according to scientists from the ARC Center of Competence for Coral Reef Studies.

The lower third of the reef is now the only section where significant bleaching was not possible.

  Great Barrier Reef & # 39; s; Cooking and dying & # 39; How to heat lakes, scientists warn

Bleaching does not kill the coral immediately – as temperatures drop, the algae have a chance to re-colonize. But when the temperatures remain high, the corals eventually die away and remove the natural habitat for many species of marine life.

The Great Barrier Reef is considered one of the seven natural wonders of the world and is the largest living structure on the planet. It is even visible from outer space.

The reef is worth the Australian economy's estimated $ 3.7 billion a year through fishing and tourism.

Around 275 million people worldwide depend on reefs to earn a living and food for about a quarter of world fish, according to the United Nations.

CNN's Ben Westcott contributed to this report.


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