Coral Reefs cover 1% of our ocean's floor, but support over 25% of our marine life.
Coral reefs protect coastlines from storms and erosion, provide jobs for local communities, and offer opportunities for recreation. They are also are a source of food an new medicines. Over half a billion people depend on reefs for food, income, and protection. Fishing, diving, and snorkeling on and near reefs add hundreds of millions of dollars to local businesses. The net economic value of the world’s coral reefs is estimated to be nearly tens of billions of U.S. dollars per year. These ecosystems are also culturally important to indigenous people around the world.
Healthy reefs act as natural barriers, protecting coastal cities, communities, and beaches from pounding ocean waves. Nearly 200 million people depend on coral reefs to protect them from storm surges and waves. Without coral reefs, many beaches and buildings would become vulnerable to wave action and storm damage. With more frequent and severe storms predicted as part of climate change, coastal protection services will become even more important.
Unfortunately, we have already lost or severely damaged more than 50% of coral reefs and 85% of oyster beds worldwide. Studies estimate nearly all reefs will be at risk by 2050 unless action is taken now to reduce the threats. These alarming projections are increasingly becoming a major challenge in many parts of the world. This is caused by three main factors: climate change, overfishing and direct human impacts.
The solution to saving our coral reefs is to first and foremost, to reduce our global GHG emissions and climate impact. With a rise in 1.5°C, we could save a sliver of them, with losses between 70 and 90 percent and a rise of 2°C would eliminate 99 percent of today’s reefs. Preventing the latter will be a major challenge, one that the current commitments from various countries will likely be unable to meet. This is extremely unfortunate, and a major transition needs to occur at political and economic levels.
With Reef.io, we collect, process and visualise data and knowledge on ocean and coral reef health - empowering scientists, communities, and governments in linking science to rapid action in marine conservation efforts. Reef.io can also be used as an digital monitoring and predictive maintenance platform that uses artificial intelligence, satellite imagery and user driven data to support coral reef health, as well as sustainable and profitable aquaculture.
With this, a list of all partnering databases will be launched in 2022, which will allow you to see where and how your data is being used for the better of our planet.
Today’s technologies allow us to explore the ocean in increasingly systematic, scientific, and noninvasive ways. With continuing scientific and technological advances, our ability to observe the ocean environment and its resident creatures is beginning to catch up with our imaginations, expanding our understanding and appreciation of this still largely unexplored realm.
Reef Support develops and implements products and services related to marine monitoring and ocean-based science. Our field-ready software to streamline MPA monitoring operations and environmental impact assessments in order to facilitate better management of coastal areas and marine ecosystems. Our mission is to accelerate the transition from data-to-decisions to scale up protection of our oceans through robust and cutting-edge technology using artificial intelligence (AI) and geographic information systems (GIS).
We believe in the power of technology and creativity to push the boundaries of ocean research and conservation. We are developing the world's most advanced technologies for the ocean with the help of our scientists and engineers.
Reef Support engages closely with small businesses, NGOs, organizations and community centers worldwide that contribute to a Reef-Positive future. This is how we create impact today, while we continue to expand and grow our technological capabilities. Through the Reef Ranger program, we give you the opportunity to learn about reef ecosystems and help conserve and protect the reef by directly helping us with our marine conservation projects all while having a fun holiday!
How we create this ecosystem of connected stakeholders is through the Global Reef Support Network, an informal coalition and platform for organizations, small businesses, researchers, and members of the public that are interested in any aspect of coral reef conservation or restoration to get involved and accelerate reef recovery. Our mission is to foster cross-activity (creation, deployment and monitoring) collaboration to towards a Reef-Positive society, and our focus lies on social outreach, educational awareness and impact. Click below to see what members and partners of our network is currently working and what they require - from you!