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Great Barrier Reef bleaching would be almost impossible without climate change

Andrew King and colleagues write in The Conversation (29.4.16) about the clear and worrying links between climate change, rising ocean temperatures and the coral bleaching event currently damaging a large swathe of the Great Barrier Reef.

‘The worst bleaching event on record has affected corals across the Great Barrier Reef in the last few months. As of the end of March, a whopping 93% of the reef has experienced bleaching. This event has led scientists and high-profile figures such as Sir David Attenborough to call for urgent action to protect the reef from annihilation.

‘There is indisputable evidence that climate change is harming the reef. Yet, so far, no one has assessed how much climate change might be contributing to bleaching events such as the one we have just witnessed.’

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