Climate-resilient coral species offer hope for the world’s reefs
A new study found two common reef-builders can cope with 2ºC of global warming.
Two of the world’s most ubiquitous species of reef-building corals seem surprisingly able to survive and even cope well with climate change, according to a new study—at least so long as global warming is kept below 2 degrees Celsius (3.6 degrees Fahrenheit), the target set by the Paris Agreement.
“We found hope,” says Rowan McLachlan, a coral expert at Oregon State University and lead author of the study published today in Nature Scientific Reports.
Hope has been a scarce thing lately on coral reefs. As a result of human-made greenhouse gas emissions, they face chronically warmer water, more intense marine heat waves, and an increasingly acidic ocean. That’s in addition to local stresses from pollution and overfishing.
The world has so