Shade cloth ‘could protect reef from global warming’

Ove seems to be competing with Jimmy for the title of most spectacular involuntary trolley dismount – and he cost me $100 because I wagered this was a spoof piece or inadvertently released April Fools plan. Incredibly, this is about a real paper published today by Nature Climate Change and includes the floating shade cloth pitch, along with plans to electrocute the reef, inter alia.

Options like shade cloth need to be explored as ways of protecting coral and other marine life from global warming, scientists say.

Shade cloth could be soon protecting coral from heat stress if scientists concerned about saving oceans from global warming have their way.

If current trends continue, atmospheric carbon dioxide could increase to more than 80 per cent above pre-industrial levels by 2050.

Rising ocean temperatures and acidity could outstrip the ability of marine species to survive, says Ove Hoegh-Guldberg of the Global Change Institute, at University of Queensland.

In a paper published in Nature Climate Change on Monday, Professor Hoegh-Guldberg and fellow researchers say current actions identified in national and international policy will not be enough to counter the impacts of the carbon dioxide emissions, if the trends continue.

He says it is unwise to assume we will be able to stabilise atmospheric carbon dioxide at levels necessary to prevent ongoing damage to marine ecosystems.

“A much broader approach to marine management and mitigation options, including shade cloth, electrical current and genetic engineering must be seriously considered,” the professor says.

Shade cloth could protect corals from heat stress, which leads to bleaching and death.


Nature Climate Change

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3 responses to “Shade cloth ‘could protect reef from global warming’

  1. Bruce of Newcastle

    Our Ove has certainly won gold medal for silly idea of the year.

    I wonder what Dr Berkelmans thinks of this, since his group in Townsville found that corals adapt rather well to rising temperature.

  2. SBS is unhappy. A few hours I commented on the SBS version of the story linked above and was interested when they posted the comments. So I’ve been keeping an eye on it. An hour or so ago there were 8 comments including mine, all rather critical of Prof Ove’s idea.

    Now the comments are gone. Zip. Nada. No commenting allowed. Heh, between Junkscience and Tom Nelson linking to them they must have had a sceptical hurricane sweep through.

    Oops, must not let us plebs have our say.

  3. We need some shade for the scientists.

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