Coral Reefs: The Industrial Revolution

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In the last thirty years around fifty percent of the total coral reefs have been lost, and in around fifty years there may be none left (Becatoros, 2017). Coral decline has drastically increased since the industrial revolution. The industrial revolution is the period between the eighteenth and nineteenth century where rural societies in England and the United States transitioned into being industrialized, which saw an emergence in the use of fossil fuels and large scale animal rearing. The industrial revolution saw a rise in methane and carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, which are waste products of animals and fossil fuel burning respectively. These gasses destroy the ozone layer and absorb heat respectively. These types of gasses are called…show more content…
Hich carbon dioxide content in the atmosphere traps heat which is transferred to the ocean; it is also absorbed into the ocen, which causes the ocean to become more acidic. This is the most frequent cause of coral death. In comparison to dynamite fishing, spear fishing, land pollution, sea pollution, tourism, overfishing and invasive species, the increase in greenhouse gasses is the main cause of coral reef destruction globally, as it changes the temperature, current and content of the ocean, and it causes an increase in frequency and intensity of natural disasters. The rise in temperature of the atmosphere causes the sea level to rise as a result of glaciers melting and thermal expansion (1), this causes a change in the density and salinity. This change in density causes currents to vary, becoming more or less violent and varying in temperature (2), causing physical destruction and aiding coral bleaching. Coral bleaching is the loss of coral color due to the loss of colorful algae (zooxanthellae) residing inside them, it usually results in death. A famous variation in sea current is the rise in temperature of El Niño (8),…show more content…
Up to 1998 it was thought that the main cause of coral fatalities was not climate change, but after global coral destruction that year it was clear that local factors had a limited effect (8). Chemicals dumped in the sea affect cloudiness of the water and upset the chemical ecosystem, possibly killing detrimental coral inhabitants. Physical sea pollutants kill corals and their inhabitants physically. Land pollutants add to the carbon pools, or run off into the sea as from rainfall then end up becoming sea pollutants. Spear and dynamite fishing destroys corals physically and sometimes create imbalances in key interactions with corals and fish. Corals are harvested or damaged by tourists, which sometimes leads to death and irreversible damage. The introduction of foreign species or imbalance of regional species may be caused by overfishing, pollution, poaching, or releasing of pets, all which creates an imbalance between predator and prey or resources in coral reefs (Nicholls, 2008). The difference between the destruction of coral reefs by climate change and the other factors is that the other factors only affect corals in their respective locations. Tourist practices or pollution practices are different in each area, so anthropogenic activities other than global warming do not happen as often as

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