The Australian’s coverage of Great Barrier Reef study creates perception that scientists are divided
“The Australian chooses to present a mixed message on this story when the science is extremely clear. The title and quote from Prof. Kaempf do not represent the views of the broader scientific community.”
While natural temperature fluctuations (due to El Niño, for example) have always occurred, they are now superimposed on a warmer background due to human-induced global warming. That causes mass coral bleaching to happen more frequently.
“This article is mostly accurate … the frequency of massive bleaching events is increasing, will continue to increase in the near future, and these events do not need to occur annually to kill the reef. The variability of El Niño Southern Oscillation on top of the background warming trend of surface temperatures means that we will exceed the bleaching thresholds more frequently.”
This Mashable article reports on new preliminary research that finds the ongoing coral bleaching event in the Pacific is mainly due to human-caused global warming, and that if global warming proceeds as currently expected, “large parts” of the Great Barrier Reef could die by the mid-2030s. Six scientists have reviewed the article and conclude that it is overall accurate and in agreement with the science.