Coral Bleaching
Prof. Ove Hoegh-Guldberg
Chair, CRTR Coral Bleaching Working Group

Bleached coral, Great Barrier Reef



The situation

Early in 2002, large scale bleaching affected the world’s largest continuous coral reef.  More than 60% of the Great Barrier Reef bleached and up to 5% was severely damaged as a result. Bleaching events have also been recorded in many important reef systems worldwide, particularly those in the Caribbean region. read more

Who we are

The Bleaching Working Group draws together international experts to investigate the impacts of coral bleaching, local ecology and climate change on the world’s coral reefs. read more

Our research

The Group’s research is filling critical information gaps with respect to coral bleaching and mortality. Focus areas include the susceptibility and tolerance of corals to rising sea temperatures; the impact of global climate change on coral reef ecosystems; management tools to identify and monitor stress on coral reefs; and understanding of the socio-economic implications of climate change. read more

Progress so far

Key outcomes include ecological and environmental monitoring with regards to population dynamics; improved understanding of the fundamental mechanisms of coral bleaching; compiling data on the effects of bleaching on coral and fish communities in the western Indian Ocean; and data on the geographical and functional diversity of Symbiodinium. read more

Information resources

The CRTR Program has a range of bleaching-related publications. read more


Coral Bleaching Working Group contacts. read more

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