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200+ Miles Of Belize's Reefs Bleached - 27% Of World 's Coral Already Permanently Lost

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hatrack Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-30-06 12:50 PM
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200+ Miles Of Belize's Reefs Bleached - 27% Of World 's Coral Already Permanently Lost
CAYE CAULKER, Belize - A rainbow-hued parrot fish nibbles on a veined purple sea fan in the tranquil waters of Belize's barrier reef, the largest in the western hemisphere. But the fish stays well away from a large patch of dying coral, a white skeleton amid the bright colors of spectacular ocean life along the coast.

Much of the 200 miles (320 km) of Belize's coral reef has been "bleached" in the last decade and some scientists warn it is likely to die, a victim of global warming. Reefs around the world are in peril with people damaging the delicate ecosystems and endangering some 1 million species of animals and plants that call the coral home.

Scientists estimate over 27 percent of the world's coral has been permanently lost and at current rates of destruction, another 30 percent will disappear over the next three decades. Reefs across the Caribbean have been hit particularly hard, making them vulnerable to deadly diseases. Greenhouse gas emissions raise the sea surface temperature and increase the acidity of the ocean, hurting the reef, said Melanie McField from the World Wildlife Fund in Belize City, and the damage is almost impossible to control. "Other effects of development like pollution and over-fishing are caused by locals and can be mitigated. But with bleaching nothing is off limits," she said.

Belize lost nearly half of its reef, a World Heritage Site, in 1998 when global warming and the "El Nino" weather phenomenon combined to cause the highest sea temperatures ever recorded worldwide. Experts say 16 percent of the world's coral was wiped out that year and the damage was made even worse off this Central American nation by Hurricane Mitch, which ravaged the reef with huge waves and covered it with silt and sand.

EDIT

http://www.planetark.org/dailynewsstory.cfm?newsid=3872...
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Parche Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-30-06 12:52 PM
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1. bleach
That damn Clorox.........................
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hatrack Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-30-06 12:57 PM
Response to Reply #1
2. The only question that matters . . .
How can we make this BILL CLINTON'S FAULT?!?!?!?
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Parche Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-30-06 01:20 PM
Response to Reply #2
4. clintons fault
Didnt he bleach his male unit???? haha

Something Rush Limoxycotin would say.....
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Mabus Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-30-06 01:02 PM
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3. It was so beautiful
I vacationed about ten years ago in San Pedro. To make a long story short, my friends have friends who are native to the area. I met up with these guys and had a great time. I spend an entire day exploring the reef. It was so beautiful that I had to go back. The second time I spend the day out there I stayed on the boat drinking Belikin beer and smoking Cuban cigars (real ones!) and watched all the sea creatures darting in and out. It was the most relaxing day I have probably ever had in my life. It also reinforced my conviction that I the environment is the single most important political issue we will face in our lifetime.
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