2019-06-28 10:40

The Group of 20 (G20) Ministerial Meeting on Energy Transitions and Global Environment for Sustainable Growth adopted a framework for action on marine plastic litter. In a Communique, the G20 Environment Ministers call for action to tackle marine plastic litter and microplastics, among other types of marine litter, and to address the adverse impacts on marine ecosystems, livelihoods, industries and human health.

2019-06-26 10:36

Media coverage of mass coral bleaching on the Great Barrier Reef may have been a major tipping point for public concerns around climate change, according to research published today.

Severe and extensive bleaching during the summers of 2016 and 2017 has been directly attributed to human-caused climate change. Much of the ensuing media coverage used emotional language, with many reports of the Reef dying.

While the physical effects of the bleaching have been well documented, we wanted to understand the social and cultural impact.

2019-06-21 04:38

The Reef-World Foundation is the international coordinator of the UN Environment's Green Fins initiative. Green Fins focuses on driving environmentally friendly scuba diving and snorkelling practices across the industry globally and can be used by governments in their efforts to meet the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals 14 (Life below water) and 12 (Responsible consumption and production).

In this interview, JJ Harvey (Director of the Reef-World Foundation) talks about the Green Fins initiative, the new Dive Guide e-Course and why it's so important.

2019-06-18 08:30

A summary poster to help guide the detection and identification of Stony Coral Tissue Loss Disease (SCTLD) was designed in early 2019 by MPAConnect, a partnership between the Gulf and Caribbean Fisheries Institute and US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's (NOAA) Coral Reef Conservation Program with a network of 30 Caribbean coral reef marine protected areas.

2019-06-17 11:37

The International Year of the Reef (IYOR) 2018 End of year Report has been finalised and is now available for download.

The report features only a small selection of the numerous events and activities that took place over the Year in support of the IYOR ranging from local beach clean-ups to proclamation signings declaring the IYOR. We are grateful for all of the support and enthusiasm you had for the IYOR, and what a success you helped make it.

Although the IYOR 2018 has come to an end, the work that took place during the Year must continue, and we encourage all of you to keep the spirit and message of the IYOR alive.



2019-06-06 07:23

The Great Barrier Reef may be the planet's largest living structure, but its underwater landscapes have never been fully mapped - until now.

The Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority is teaming up with the University of Queensland in a collaborative project that will see the Great Barrier Reef's biology and geomorphology mapped in unprecedented 3D detail.

Thanks to technology advancements, spatial experts can now combine state-of-the-art satellite imagery, bathymetry, slope, wave data, climate data, and modelling techniques, as well as project partners' knowledge of reef environments, to fill existing gaps. It builds on more than 20 years of work by remote sensing experts and will combine the knowledge of ecologists, Reef managers and citizen scientists.

2019-05-09 09:58

At the occasion of the G7 Environment Ministers' Meeting held in Metz, France, on May 5th and 6th, the International Coral Reef Initiative was chosen as one of the initiatives to be presented. This was an opportunity to continue to raise the plight for coral reefs and to strengthen the initiative.

2019-05-08 10:53

Nature is declining globally at rates unprecedented in human history — and the rate of species extinctions is accelerating, with grave impacts on people around the world now likely, warns a landmark new report from the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES), the summary of which was approved at the 7th session of the IPBES Plenary, meeting last week (29 April – 4 May) in Paris.

2019-05-01 07:54

The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) released the findings of a new, in-depth study titled "Rigorously Valuing the Role of U.S. Coral Reefs in Coastal Hazard Risk Reduction" (funded in part by the U.S. Department of the Interior's (DOI) Office of Insular Affairs) demonstrating annual benefits of coral reefs including a flood-protection barrier for more than 18,000 coastal citizens and $1.8 billion worth of coastal infrastructure in the United States and its trust territories. The study will help managers take effective actions to reduce the risk to, and increase the resiliency of, U.S. mainland and U.S. insular area coastal communities to flooding and other hazards.

2019-04-29 09:07

Stony coral tissue loss disease (SCTLD) is a new lethal disease first reported in Florida in 2014. The cause of the disease is unknown but it is affecting >20 species of corals especially brain, pillar, star and starlet corals. The disease spreads quickly causing high coral mortality. Outbreaks of SCTLD have been noted in other parts of the Caribbean: Jamaica, Mexican Caribbean, St. Maarten and, most recently St. Thomas, USVI and the Dominican Republic.

2019-04-26 08:21

The Nature Conservancy (TNC) has announced details of ambitious $40 million initiative to promote ocean conservation

The initiative, which was announced at a TED talk in Vancouver today, is based on delivering Blue Bonds to up to 20 countries over the next five years. The international environmental non-profit organisation hopes that these will help ensure the new protection of up to 1.5 million square miles of the world's most biodiversity-critical ocean habitats - a 15 percent increase in the amount of protected ocean that currently exists.

2019-04-23 08:16

With the support of Professional SCUBA Schools International (PSS), the Green Fins Dive Guide e-Course has been launched. This is the only course available which teaches dive professionals how to prevent diving-related damage to coral reefs by following the highest environmental standards, as set out by the Green Fins initiative. Dive guides can access the course for free here and have the option of donating £19 ($24) to support Green Fins' work around the world and receive a personalised electronic certificate.

2019-04-12 09:38

The Khaled bin Sultan Living Oceans Foundation has completed the World Reef Map, an online interactive coral reef atlas that allows users to explore all of the coral reefs and shallow water marine habitats mapped on the Global Reef Expedition. This digital coral reef atlas is the result of years of work by a team of dedicated scientists and many months of field research in coral reef ecosystems around the world.

2019-04-05 08:44

The workshop was hosted by the Government of Anguilla, organised by the Joint Nature Conservation Committee / Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (JNCC/Defra) and facilitated by Dialogue Matters. The aim of the workshop was to bring UK Overseas Territories (OTs) in the Caribbean and other regional bodies together to build relationships, help identify the main threats and challenges facing coral reefs in each territory, and identify potential areas for greater collaboration in the region.

2019-04-04 08:59

The 5-minute Community of Ocean Action video briefly outlines the issues facing coral reefs globally, it then touches on how the Communities came about, specifically focussing on the coral reef community and number of voluntary commitments so far. In addition to Special Envoy for the Ocean Peter Thomson, interviews clips include a fisherman from Kiwayu, Kenya describing the decline in reef fish stocks; Lisa Svensson; Brahmantya Poerwadi, Director General of Marine Spatial Management, Ministry of Marine Affairs and Fisheries in Indonesia and ICRI co-chair; and David Obura, Director of CORDIO East Africa.

2019-04-01 07:40

During Monaco Ocean Week, ICRI hosted a special breakfast event about coral reefs. The event brought together more than 50 participants and recalled the main objectives of the ICRI 2018-2020 action plan, which was also adopted in December 2018 during the 33rd ICRI General Meeting in Monaco, also endorsed recently at the 4th Assembly of Nations for the Environment and in particular: 

2019-03-27 07:56

The tourism industry plays a vital role in presenting the values of the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area to millions of visitors each year. To further educate visitors experiencing the beauty of the Reef, the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority, together with the Association of Marine Park Tourism Operators and Tourism and Events Queensland, have launched the ‘Master Reef Guides' program. In February, the first intake of 13 specially trained guides graduated from the program and can be seen on tourism operations across the Reef educating visitors about Reef management and protection, responsible practices, and citizen science.

2019-03-27 07:16

The Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority is calling for collective regional, national and international action to reduce the impacts of marine debris on the Great Barrier Reef. In March, the Authority released its position statement on marine debris, identifying it as one of the major threats to the natural wonder that is the Great Barrier Reef.

2019-03-21 05:54

The Wildlife Conservation Society, in collaboration with the Conservation Finance Alliance and in support of the 50 Reefs initiative, recently released "Finance Tools for Coral Reef Conservation: A Guide" as a resource for protected area managers and others charged with managing and financing reef conservation. The report describes 13 types of finance tools which have either been proven successful at or have great potential to support reef conservation and sustainable management. Some of the finance tools to be covered in this overview webinar include various tourism-based fees, biodiversity offsets, bonds, debt swaps, and conservation trust funds. This webinar will share key findings and recommendations from the report and invite discussion from participants.

2019-03-18 13:18

The United Nations Environment Assembly is the world's highest-level decision-making body on the environment. It addresses the critical environmental challenges facing the world today. Understanding these challenges and preserving and rehabilitating our environment is at the heart of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. The Environment Assembly meets biennially to set priorities for global environmental policies and develop international environmental law. Through its resolutions and calls to action, the Assembly provides leadership and catalyses intergovernmental action on the environment. Decision-making requires broad participation, which is why the Assembly provides an opportunity for all peoples to help design solutions for our planet's health.

2019-03-15 10:45

The UN Environment Programme (UNEP) has launched a report that provides recommendations for policymakers on how to address and reduce the impact of plastics on shallow water coral reefs. The report is one of several publications on the conservation and sustainable use of marine environments released by UNEP in conjunction with the fourth session of the UN Environment Assembly (UNEA-4).

2019-03-15 10:00

The UN Environment Programme (UNEP) and the Government of Japan have announced an initiative on tackling marine plastic litter in Southeast Asia and India. The initiative focuses on tackling plastic pollution at its source.

The initiative titled, ‘Promotion of Countermeasures Against Marine Plastic Litter in Southeast Asia and India,' will develop a model for plastic leakage and monitor leakage hotspots along the Ganges and Mekong rivers. The initiative will also enhance information and knowledge on how to develop and implement countermeasures against marine plastic litter. Selected cities and local and provincial governments in India will also receive support to stop plastic pollution.

2019-02-17 07:25

The Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity is pleased to announce that the theme of the International Day for Biological Diversity on 22 May 2019 will be: "Our Biodiversity, Our Food, Our Health".

Whether you are in New York or Nairobi or Nagoya, chances are you have access to a greater variety of food than your parents or your grandparents once did. But even as the offerings become more diverse, the global diet as a whole - what people actually eat - is becoming more homogenized, and this is a dangerous thing.

2019-02-16 11:23

Coral reefs are critical ecosystems that are home to more than 25% of all known marine species, while occupying less than one quarter of 1% of the Earth’s marine environment (IUCN, 2013). In June 2018, the 50 Reefs initiative culminated with the publication of a scientific study on coral reefs that are least vulnerable to climate change and have the greatest capacity to repopulate other reefs over time. To contibute to 50 Reefs, the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) worked in conjunction with the Conservation Finance Alliance (CFA) to create a working guide on the financial tools available for coral reef conservation.

2019-02-08 14:29

CRCP's National Coral Reef Monitoring Program released two new products during the midst of the holidays and government shutdown - I wanted to share them both again in case you missed them:

The Pacific status reports are out! Status reports are available for American Samoa, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, Guam, Hawaii, and the Pacific Remote Islands. These high-level reports are meant to communicate the status of US coral reefs to a broad audience. Thanks to the Integration and Application Network, University of Maryland team for leading this effort! Check them out: https://www.coris.noaa.gov/monitoring/status_report/