Last updated: 08:34 PM ET, Sun October 16 2016

Despite 'Obituary' Great Barrier Reef is Certainly Not Dead

Features & Advice | Jessica Kleinschmidt | October 15, 2016

Despite 'Obituary' Great Barrier Reef is Certainly Not Dead

Coral in the Great Barrier Reef, Australia photo via Wikimedia 

Following an article by Outside Magazine saying the Great Barrier Reef was dead, CNN made sure to let everyone know the iconic reef is very much alive.

“There is a big difference between dead and dying,” writes CNN’s Sophie Lewis.

Lewis writes the original article from Outside Magazine received an instantantaneous amount of attention --- the negative kind from “both scientists and social media users alike.”

The article begins saying the Great Barrier Reef had “passed away this year after a long illness.” In a strange obituary-like way, author Rowan Jacobsen gives the age of “the deceased.”

CNN went on to defend the accusations of the reef saying it is indeed in trouble and in danger of becoming extinct, but the article in question is “over-exaggerating.” The morbid article blames the Australian government which reports the government “pressured the United Nations to remove the reef from a climate change report because it was concerned about its impact on tourism.”

A report by the ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies states 93% of the reef is affected by bleaching. The bleaching occurs “when coral are put under extreme stress by changes in conditions like temperature, light, or nutrients. In these conditions, they expel symbiotic algae from their tissues, causing them to turn white.”

The seven percent that remains means the reef is still alive. Cornell Cooperative Extension at Rockland County tweeted that the reef is dying, but it’s certainly not dead.

The reef’s resilience towards the bleaching has been lacking, but with millions of visitors per year, Lewis wants to stress the reef is not deceased. This “obit” could be considered null and void. If anything, the awareness is now there, but the deathly message


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