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The Great Barrier Reef
Transcript of The Great Barrier Reef
The Great Barrier Reef is about the size of 70 million football fields.
The size of the reef is roughly the same as Italy, Japan, Germany, and Malaysia.
Astronauts can see the Great Barrier Reef from outer space. The Great Barrier Reef is one of the seven natural wonders of the world.
Andrew Powell, the Environment Minister for Queensland, Australia, is in charge of the Reef and he is actually afraid of water!
Last year, the Australian Institute of Marine Science reported that the Great Barrier Reef has lost half of its coral cover over the past 27 years.
Warmer ocean temperatures put stress on coral and lead to coral bleaching. Coral bleaching is when the coral release the algae living in their tissues, causing them to turn completely white. Coral bleaching does not actually kill the coral, but stresses it out and eventually leads to death. Pollution from runoff and sediment is also a big threat to the reef.
Since the 1960s, the Crown of Thorns starfish have been destroying the corals that make up the Great Barrier Reef.
Various parts of the Great Barrier Reef are protected. Fishing is restricted in some areas and some animals, like whales, dolphins, and green turtles, are protected. In 2004, the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority increased the amount of highly protected zones by almost 30 percent.
Tourism sometimes has a negative impact on the Great Barrier Reef. The reef can be damaged from people breaking fragile coral by reef walking, dropping anchors, or by boats dropping fuel and other pollution.
Since The Great Barrier Reef is a huge tourist attraction, the destruction of the coral could have a negative impact on the tourism industry of Australia.
The Great Barrier Reef is a popular tourist destination with around 1 1/2 to 2 million visitors each year. Some tourist attractions are: diving, snorkeling, and glass bottom boat tours.
Tourism can promote public environmental awareness and spread education about reef ecosystems.
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Handwerk, Brian. "Great Barrier Reef: World Heritage in Danger?" National Geographic. National Geographic Society, 08 June 2013. Web. 05 Feb. 2015.
"Great Barrier Reef · Learn · Australian Marine Conservation Society." Great Barrier Reef · Learn · Australian Marine Conservation Society. N.p., n.d. Web. 06 Feb. 2015.
"Australia.gov.au." Great-barrier-reef. N.p., n.d. Web. 06 Feb. 2015.
"Tourism." , The Great Barrier Reef, The Great Barrier Reef, SOSE: Geography Year 8, QLD. N.p., n.d. Web. 06 Feb. 2015.
"Saving Corals." Issue Viewer. N.p., n.d. Web. 10 Feb. 2015.
The Great Barrier Reef is home to a wide range of life like seahorses, sea turtles, clams, stingrays, and many more. Some endangered species of the Great Barrier Reef are:
Australian sea lions
Southern bluefin tuna
Dugong (sea cow)
To try to help the coral, scientists are working to re-grow them. They dive down and search for pieces of coral that have broken off and actually glue them back on. They then use special techniques to help them grow quickly.
How big is the
Great Barrier Reef?
What is the Great Barrier Reef?
The Great Barrier Reef is the world's largest coral reef system. It is found in the Coral Sea and is located off the coast of Queensland, Australia.
Protecting the Reef
What kind of marine life live in the Great Barrier Reef?
How has the Size of the Great Barrier Reef Changed?
What is Destroying the Reef?
How are tourists damaging the reef?
How does the reef benefit from tourism?
What are some activities for tourists?
Who is in charge of the Great Barrier Reef?
What is being done to save the coral?
What is damaging the coral?
What effect does the reef have on tourism?
By: Caroline Gaharan