EPL Prediction Competition 2018-2019 Kata Rocks
Login | Create Account Poll Currency Weather Facebook Youtube Search

Ocean plastics raise risk of coral reef disease, says study


By AFP

Saturday 27 January 2018, 05:00PM


Coral reefs are already under stress due to global warming, which boosts diseases and can cause coral to bleach and die. Photo: AFP

Coral reefs are already under stress due to global warming, which boosts diseases and can cause coral to bleach and die. Photo: AFP

When coral reefs come in contact with plastic trash in the ocean, their risk of becoming diseased skyrockets, said an international study out on Thursday (Jan 25).

Researchers examined more than 120,000 corals on 159 reefs – some polluted with plastic, others not – from Indonesia, Australia, Myanmar and Thailand for the study in the journal Science.

"We found that the chance of disease increased from four percent to 89 percent when corals are in contact with plastic," said lead author Joleah Lamb, from the ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies at James Cook University in Australia.

Lamb said scientists are still trying to figure out why plastics are so dangerous for coral, which are living organisms that cover about 0.2 percent of the ocean floor – but provide crucial habitat for nearly a million species of young fish.

It could be that "plastics make ideal vessels for colonizing microscopic organisms that could trigger disease if they come into contact with corals," she said.

QSI International School Phuket

"For example, plastic items such as those commonly made of polypropylene, like bottle caps and toothbrushes, have been shown to become heavily inhabited by bacteria that are associated with a globally devastating group of coral diseases known as white syndromes."

The problem of plastic pollution is widespread in the world's oceans, and is rapidly getting worse.

"We estimate there are 11.1 billion plastic items on coral reefs across the Asia-Pacific and forecast this to increase by 40 percent within seven years," Lamb said.

"That equates to an estimated 15.7 billion plastic items on coral reefs across the Asia-Pacific by 2025."

Coral reefs are already under stress due to global warming, which boosts diseases and can cause coral to bleach and die.

 

 

Comment on this story

* Please login to comment. If you do not have an account please register below by simply entering a username, password and email address. You can still leave your comment below at the same time.

Comments Here:
Comments Left:
# Characters
Username:
Password:
E-mail:
Security:

Be the first to comment.

Have a news tip-off? Click here

 

Phuket community
Chinese tourist drowns at Racha

Thailand clearly will never learn, just rely on putting up red flags all over, then blaming tourists...(Read More)


Foul stench of sewage in black-water canal spurs Phuket hotel wastewater inspections

I have long held that Kamala is one of the filthiest bays in Phuket. The south khlong fouls the sea ...(Read More)


Phuket Governor to appeal to Cabinet for B108mn to improve marine safety

The list of "improvements" are a telling indication they have no idea, stop being so lazy ...(Read More)


Foul stench of sewage in black-water canal spurs Phuket hotel wastewater inspections

“We are planing to inspect suspicious hotels in the area from Monday (Aug 21),” he said. Will n...(Read More)


Phuket to hold mass merit-making event for Phoenix victims

Poor wording, "merit-making" Merit, the quality of being particularly good or worthy, esp...(Read More)


Phuket Governor to appeal to Cabinet for B108mn to improve marine safety

So this is his final gift to his cronies before being shuffled to the next area where he can continu...(Read More)


On Phuket, hotel guests check out of plastic waste

Why the pic of Bali when every beach on Phuket right now is also encrusted with refuse? Could the ...(Read More)


Phuket law office raided over nominee land deals for foreigners

If you ever need some remote editing done...I know just the person. btw I loathe the 3 stage captch...(Read More)


Foul stench of sewage in black-water canal spurs Phuket hotel wastewater inspections

Once again their "solution" is let it flow more freely into the sea. The guys says it stin...(Read More)


Truck driver blames reckless tourist for motorbike slam

How utterly tacky to show the victim and the blood. Please pretend like you've got some class an...(Read More)