For those who have yet to visit Australia's Great Barrier Reef, now would be the best time to visit. Reports state that the Great Barrier Reef is dying, with almost half of the reef's corals already having vanished. All this due to the effects of global warming and coral bleaching.
In 2015, approximately 70 percent of people have made it to the Great Barrier Reef due to reports that it is close to death. The reports are anything but false. In fact, while some studies state half of the coral reefs are affected by the warming ocean temperature, one study estimated that more than 90 percent of it is.
Due to the effects of global warming and coral bleaching on the Great Barrier Reef, this has brought on the last-chance tourism phenomenon. This happens each time a destination is close to death, of which the same instance occurred at the Galapagos Islands and Maldives. While this may be great news for the tourism industry in Australia, it's bad news for the coral reefs.
"There's a vicious cycle at play here: tourists travel to see a destination before it disappears, but in so doing they contribute to its demise, either directly through on-site pressures or ... through greenhouse gas emissions," stated an author of the study in the Conversation.
On the other hand, reef scientist Peter Mumbly claims otherwise. In an interview with the Motherboard, Mumby states that the effects of tourism are "overwhelmingly positive."
"The greater the value of Great Barrier Reef tourism, the easier it is to justify government investment in reef management," said Mumby.
The effects of global warming and coral bleaching on the Great Barrier Reef may not be immediately evident, but researcher Brett Lewis of the Queensland University of Technology managed to capture it all on video. On his YouTube channel, the time-lapse video reminds everyone just how pressing the issue of coral bleaching is.
The Great Barrier Reef Has Been Hiding Massive Donut-Shaped Reef For Years
Consequences of Climate Change: Kelp! Australia's Underwater Forest Wiped Out by Marine Heatwave
Coral Bleaching Gets Worse, Shows No Signs of Stopping
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