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Reef coral bleaching hits ‘severe’ level

The Brisbane Times reports (20.3.16) on moves by government authorities to heighten the threat level of coral bleaching on the Great Barrier Reef.

‘The iconic Great Barrier Reef has reached a severe level of coral bleaching more widespread than previously thought, prompting authorities to increase the threat level to its highest.

‘The Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority on Sunday lifted its response to level three, which means severe regional bleaching has been detected across the underwater ecosystem.

‘The worst hit areas are in the remote far north on inshore Cape York reefs, with up to half of the coral there dying from prolonged higher than average sea surface temperatures.

‘The revised bleaching level comes almost a week after authorities raised the coral bleaching warning from level one to level two after widespread bleaching was detected.’

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