THE RESPONSE NEEDED:
"If current CO2 emission trends continue, then even the most conservative estimates predict CO2 concentrations exceeding 500ppm and global temperature increases of 2C or more by the end of the century," Professor Hoegh-Guldberg says. Under these conditions coral reefs are likely to dwindle into insignificance; theyll be reduced to rubble, threatening the fate of those tens of millions of people whose livelihoods depend upon them.
We clearly have to do more to reduce CO2 emissions and still more in preparing vulnerable communities to the almost inevitable problems that they will face as a result of already entrained climate change.
As world leaders gather for the last day of the United Nations Framework Convention for Climate Change (UNFCCC) meeting in Bali today, the CRTR scientists argue that the issue of global CO2 emissions demands leadership at the international level, including a collective agreement on carbon emission reductions.
Says Dr Marea Hatziolos, CRTR Team Leader, World Bank, and a co-author of the Science paper: There is an urgent need for high carbon growth countries to reduce their total CO2 emissions and a responsibility on the part of industrialized nations to assist the most vulnerable coral reef states adapt to climate change impacts while reducing local risks to reefs.
Dr Hatziolos points out that most coral reefs occur within developing countries where poverty and reliance on ecosystem goods and services place great pressure on them.
In developing countries, tourism based on ecosystem services provided by coral reefs is a vital and rapidly expanding industry, Dr Hatzi
|Contact: Mark Paterson|
Coral Reef Targeted Research Program