Status of the Coral Reefs in the Pacific and Outlook. Reports by the Global Coral Reef Network in collaboration with UNEP, IUCN and other agencies
This dataset shows the global distribution of coral reefs in tropical and subtropical regions. It is the most comprehensive global dataset of warm-water coral reefs to date, acting as a foundation baseline map for future, more detailed, work. This dataset was compiled from a number of sources by UNEP World Conservation Monitoring Centre (UNEP-WCMC) and the WorldFish Centre, in collaboration with WRI (World Resources Institute) and TNC (The Nature Conservancy).
This paper discuss impacts of climate change on corals according to standardized metrics. It also deals with non-climate drivers because of the synergistic effects they have with climate drivers affecting Pacific corals.
Between September 10, 2013 – October 3, 2013 the Khaled bin Sultan Living Oceans Foundation conducted a
research mission to Tonga, focusing on coral reefs surrounding the islands in the Ha'apai group (Sep 11-21),
Vava'u (Sep 22-28) and Niuaatoputapu (Sep 29-Oct 1). The mission included coral reef assessments, coral reef
research, habitat mapping, and educational activities. The objectives of the mission were to:
This dataset provides a direct internet link to easily access marine life information and data recorded for Tuvalu on the Sea Life Base portal. Sea Life Base is a global online database of information about marine life. It aims to provide key information on the taxonomy, distribution and ecology of all marine species in the world apart from finfish.
The Coral Triangle is a marine area located in the western Pacific Ocean. It includes the waters of Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Papua New Guinea, Timor Leste and Solomon Islands.
This book provides a comprehensive summary of the current status of six different MPA networks and their complexities. It analyzes MPA networks through their various stages of development including planning and design, implementation and evaluation as they are emerging within and around the Coral Triangle.
Coral reefs in every region of the world are threatened by climate change, no matter how remote or well protected. Identifying and protecting climate refugia is a popular recommendation for coral reef management. Climate refugia are locations that maintain suitable environmental conditions for a resident species even when surrounding areas become inhospitable.
Calcium carbonate (CaCO3) sediment dissolution under elevated concentrations of carbon dioxide (CO2) and nitrate (NO3−)
Ocean acidification (OA), attributed to the sequestration of atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) into the surface ocean, and coastal eutrophication, attributed in part to land-use change and terrestrial runoff of fertilizers, have received recent attention in an experimental framework examining the effects of each on coral reef net ecosystem calcification (Gnet). However, OA and eutrophication in conjunction have yet to receive attention from the perspective of coral reef sediment dissolution.
Expression of calcification and metabolism-related genes in response to elevated pCO2 and temperature in the reef-building coral Acropora millepora
Declining health of scleractinian corals in response to deteriorating environmental conditions is widely acknowledged, however links between physiological and functional genomic responses of corals are less well understood. Here we explore growth and the expression of 20 target genes with putative roles in metabolism and calcification in the branching coral, Acropora millepora, in two separate experiments: 1) elevated pCO2 (464, 822, 1187 and 1638 $μ$atm) and ambient temperature (27 °C), and 2) elevated pCO2 (490 and 822 $μ$atm) and temperature (28 and 31 °C).
Ocean acidification represents a key threat to coral reefs by reducing the calcification rate of the major reef framework builders. In addition, acidification is likely to affect the important relationship between corals and their symbiotic dinoflagellates, and on the productivity of this association. However, little is known about how acidification impacts on the physiology of key reef builders and how acidification interacts with warming.
High CO2 reduces the settlement of a spawning coral on three common species of crustose coralline algae
Concern about the impacts of ocean acidification (OA) on ecosystem function has prompted many studies to focus on larval recruitment, demonstrating declines in settlement and early growth at elevated CO2 concentrations. Since larval settlement is often driven by particular cues governed by crustose coralline algae (CCA), it is important to determine whether OA reduces larval recruitment with specific CCA and the generality of any effects.
A “core-top” screen for trace element proxies of environmental conditions and growth rates in the calcite skeletons of bamboo corals (Isididae)
We test for trace element proxies in the high-magnesium calcite fraction of bamboo coral internodes by comparing environmental conditions and growth rates to the specimen-mean compositions of 73 corals that were live-caught at depths ranging from 3 to 3950 m and collected from habitats ranging from tropical coral reefs to the Antarctic slope.Comparisons were done at a large geographic scale (LGS) and for a well sampled area south of Australia, across depths at a single site, in order to help separate the effects of environmental variables that co-vary at one spatial scale, but not the other
There is a long history of examining the impacts of nutrient pollution and pH on coral reefs. However, little is known about how these two stressors interact and influence coral reef ecosystem functioning. Using a six-week nutrient addition experiment, we measured the impact of elevated nitrate (NO−3) and phosphate (PO3−4) on net community calcification (NCC) and net community production (NCP) rates of individual taxa and combined reef communities.
Using the results from the NCAR CSM1.4-coupled global carbon cycle–climate model under the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) emission scenarios SRES A2 and B1, we estimated the effects of both global warming and ocean acidification on the future habitats of corals in the seas around Japan during this century. As shown by Yara et al.
Ocean acidification (OA) is expected to drive the transition of coral reef ecosystems from net calcium carbonate (CaCO3) precipitating to net dissolving within the next century. Although permeable sediments represent the largest reservoir of CaCO3 in coral reefs, the dissolution of shallow CaCO3 sands under future pCO2 levels has not been measured under natural conditions. In situ, advective chamber incubations under elevated pCO2 (̃800 µatm) shifted the sediments from net precipitating to net dissolving.
Skeletal growth records in annually banded massive coral skeletons are an under-exploited archive of coral responses to environmental changes. Average linear extension and calcification rates in Indo-Pacific Porites are linearly related to average water temperatures through 23 to 30¯C. Assessing long-term trends in Porites extension and density requires caution as there is evidence of an age effect whereby in earlier growth years corals will tend to extend less and form a higher density skeleton than in later years. This does not appear to affect calcification rates.
Coral reefs are under threat, exerted by a number of interacting effects inherent to the present climate change, including ocean acidification and global warming. Bioerosion drives reef degradation by recycling carbonate skeletal material and is an important but understudied factor in this context.
Diurnal and seasonal variations of carbonate system parameters on Luhuitou fringing reef, Sanya Bay, Hainan Island, South China Sea
The 3-day diurnal dynamics of carbonate system and related parameters on Luhuitou fringing reef of Sanya Bay-adjacent to the South China Sea (SCS) were observed in December of 2009 (early winter), April (spring), July (summer) and November (late-autumn) of 2010. The Luhuitou fringing reef ecosystem was generally dominated by macro and planktonic algae throughout the year except by coralline algae in winter. The system parameters showed distinct diurnal trends in the four seasons.
Elevated pCO2 threatens coral reefs through impaired calcification. However, the extent to which elevated pCO2 affects the distribution of the pelagic larvae of scleractinian corals, and how this may be interpreted in the context of ocean acidification (OA), remains unknown. We tested the hypothesis that elevated pCO2 affects one aspect of the behavior (i.e., motility) of brooded larvae from Pocillopora damicornis in Okinawa (Japan), and used UV-transparent tubes that were 68-cm long (45 mm ID) to incubate larvae on a shallow fringing reef.
Rising anthropogenic CO2 in the atmosphere is accompanied by an increase in oceanic CO2 and a concomitant decline in seawater pH (ref. 1). This phenomenon, known as ocean acidification (OA), has been experimentally shown to impact the biology and ecology of numerous animals and plants, most notably those that precipitate calcium carbonate skeletons, such as reef-building corals. Volcanically acidified water at Maug, Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI) is equivalent to near-future predictions for what coral reef ecosystems will experience worldwide due to OA.