Coral bleaching on the Great Barrier Reef last year was even worse than expected, while the full impact of the most recent event is yet to be determined.
Queensland government officials say aerial and in-water surveys taken throughout 2016 had confirmed an escalating impact from north to south. The Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority chairman, Russell Reichelt, said the reef had experienced significant and widespread damage over the past two years. “The amount of coral that died from bleaching in 2016 is up from our original estimates and … it’s expected we’ll also see an overall further coral cover decline by the end of 2017.”
My memories of the beautiful Great Barrier Reef goes back to the mid 90’s and I said that I would like to return someday with the children after they finish university and have careers. But now, I am saddened by what I see in the news … yet there continues to be an argument between commerce and conservation alarm! The extent of the environmental damage is hard to hide and hard to ignore. And it’s time to ask ourselves … what have we left for our children?