Jakarta – Climate change will become a global threat to coral reefs in the future, with the relationship between increasing levels of greenhouse gas emissions and sea temperatures, experts said today. These two things lead to an increase in the frequency of mass bleaching of coral reefs.
Hedi Indra Januar, Researcher in the Field of Aquatic Ecology at the Ecology and Ethnobiology Research Center of the National Research and Innovation Agency (BRIN) revealed that the accumulation of climate change pressures and increased pollution of coastal waters will have a major impact on coral reefs. Recent studies show that the response of coral reefs to future environmental challenges may vary.
In future predictions from the many variations, ecological modeling can be used as a basis for general reconstruction of the optimal environmental distribution pattern to support the life of Indonesian coral reefs.
“This computational modeling approach can serve as a predictor for mapping the optimal habitat area for an organism, based on the environmental parameters where it is currently found,” he said in a written statement.
According to Januar, the western side of Indonesia, which generally has higher human activity pressure than the eastern side, will experience a loss of optimal environmental conditions for high coral reefs in the future. Meanwhile, a shift in the pattern of coastal communities has resulted in a decrease in the area of coral reefs in various areas. Observations at various locations of coral reefs in Indonesia have shown that high levels of nutrients often result in coastal areas dead, broken, or covered with algae.
“Current conservation priorities need to be focused on maintaining the health of coastal waters, by reducing waste runoff from land areas, in order to increase the resilience of coral reef ecosystems to face the challenges of future climate change,” Januar said.
Indonesia’s coral reef area is the center of the world’s marine biota biodiversity. Indonesia has more than 500 species of hard coral, especially in the eastern Coral Triangle region, and is a habitat for various tropical marine biota that provide ecosystem services that play an important ecological role for marine life and the people’s economy. (Hartatik)