50 REEFS TO SAVE AN ECOSYSTEM
“WHAT WE ALREADY
know about the future of our coral reefs is alarming: Without immediate action, we could lose this crucial ecosystem entirely within a few short decades,” said Paul G. Allen, philanthropist and Microsoft co-founder. “What we don’t yet know is exactly where to focus critical conservation efforts to ensure the long-term survival of coral reef habitats.”
50 Reefs will be the first global plan to save the most biodiverse ecosystem on the planet. The aim is to identify a list of high-priority coral reefs that have the best chance of surviving climate change, and which will aid the recovery of coral reef ecosystems once global temperatures have stabilised. The launch comes at a perilous moment for coral reefs, as current estimates indicate that 90 percent will disappear by 2050.
The list will be announced in late 2017 and will represent a diverse “portfolio of reefs” to maximise returns for biodiversity, ecosystems and people. This science-based initiative intends to protect enough coral to ensure the reestablishment of coral reef resources in a climate-stable future.
THE “A TEAM”
The 50 Reefs initiative builds on The Ocean Agency and the Global Change Institute at the University of Queensland’s shared experience carrying out the most comprehensive global survey of coral reefs and coral bleaching ever recorded (in partnership with Google and XL Catlin). This work is also the subject of the 2017 Sundance Film Festival Audience Award winning documentary, Chasing Coral, which will be released worldwide on Netflix.
A unique philanthropic coalition of innovators in business, technology and government are supporting 50 Reefs, led by Bloomberg Philanthropies with The Tiffany & Co. Foundation and The Paul G. Allen Family Foundation, with the aim of preventing the worst economic, social, and environmental impacts of this enormous crisis.
A radical new global plan to save coral reefs from complete eradication is bringing together the world’s leading ocean, climate and marine scientists and conservation practitioners to develop a list of the 50 most critical coral reefs to protect.
ALL HANDS ON DECK
“When people think of climate change, they often think of extreme heat, severe storms, and raging wildfires. But some of the most disastrous effects of climate change are out of sight – on the ocean floor. In fact, 90 percent of coral reefs are expected to disappear by 2050 and saving the remaining coral reefs critical.