Will Our Children and Theirs Be Able to See a Smiling Clownfish One Day?
Today, 19% of our coral reefs have already disappeared and 15 more percent will die within the next ten years if action is not taken now. Coral bleaching from human-caused global warming, the runoff from construction zones and factories, dangerous sailing and fishing practices, and unregulated over-fishing, are destroying these delicate ecosystems at an alarming rate.
The Consequences of the Loss of Our Coral Reefs ? Complete World Cataclysm
If we lose our coral reefs, besides losing natural creations of great majesty, sublimity, and beauty – worlds that inspire our imaginations, creativity, and awe . . . worlds inhabited by marine life we will see nowhere else, the loss of our coral reefs would be cataclysmic to both our food supply and our global economy.
We would lose billions of dollars in travel and tourism that stimulates our recessed economy, and we would lose a crucial, major part of our global food chain.
Brian Skoloff of USA Today notes that “Coral reefs are dying, and scientists and governments around the world are contemplating what will happen if they disappear altogether. The idea positively scares them.” He adds that
Coral reefs are part of the foundation of the ocean food chain. Nearly half the fish the world eats make their homes around them. Hundreds of millions of people worldwide — by some estimates, 1 billion across Asia alone — depend on them for their food and their livelihoods.
If the reefs vanished, experts say, hunger, poverty and political instability could ensue.
Jane Lubcheno, a marine biologist who heads the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) states that
A world without coral reefs is unimaginable. Reefs are precious sources of food, medicine and livelihoods for hundreds of thousands around the world. They are also special places of renewal and recreation for thousands more. Their exotic beauty and diverse bounty are global treasures.
Go See the Reefs Now and Help Scientists Document the Fish – Before They are Gone
My hope is that my hard work upon this project will motivate others to take strong action now and begin participating in the great quest to save our coral reefs.
In addition to trying to help, we should all take our families and go see these beautiful reefs before they are gone. Instead of simply going on vacation to Disney World or some other somewhat vacuous destination, why don’t we go see the more threatened areas of existence that our children (and their children, and everyone thereafter) may never be able to see for themselves?
If we do not go witness these wonders of creation before they disappear, it is highly possible that we and they might never see the beauty of what our world was once like before humans destroyed it with greedy practices.
Just Reflect Upon What is Already Gone
If we think about all the beautiful things we will already never see now — — Prague in all its beauty before it was destroyed by war, the masterpieces we will never see due to the Nazi’s burning of them in World War II, the beauty of Japan before the atom bomb, Rome and Greece before they were ravaged and commercialized, Paris before McDonald’s moved in, and, now, our coral reefs — some of which have shopping carts and other trash floating among them and which are bleaching, out, becoming diseased, and dying – then we will have missed out on seeing something significant to our lives, our imagination, and most of all, our sense of wonder.
My hope is that some of my pictures here will inspire us to go see all these beautiful reefs around the world and the beautiful animals that call them home before it is too late –perhaps seeing them for ourselves will promote more of us to take action to ensure the long-lasting preservation of these reefs in every way possible.
Scientists say that polar bears and penguins are now endangered because of human-caused climate change. We are losing our animals, sea creatures, and the natural wonders of the world at an alarming rate.
NOVA lists a wonderful idea above that would be a great vacation for families: Visit reefs and help scientists to count species of fish and document them. Children (and adults) love a treasure hunt of any kind.
And our children deserve to see a smiling clown –before they are gone.