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USGS Scientist Interviewed About Threats to Coral Reefs

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Curt Storlazzi, Guy Marion, and Brian Lapointe.
Above: (Left to right) Curt Storlazzi (USGS), Guy Marion (University of Queensland), and Brian Lapointe (Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute) presented information on threats to coral reefs at a press conference held February 2006 at the Ocean Sciences Meeting in Honolulu, Hawaii. [larger version]

On February 22, 2006, U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) researcher Curt Storlazzi participated in a press conference on "Threats to Coral Reefs" at the 13th Ocean Sciences Meeting in Honolulu, Hawaii—a meeting sponsored jointly by the American Geophysical Union (AGU), The Oceanography Society (TOS), and the American Society of Limnology and Oceanography (ASLO). AGU organized the press conference, which brought together three scientists to give short summaries of the talks they presented at the meeting and to answer reporters' questions about coral-reef health.

Brian Lapointe (Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute, Fort Pierce, Fla.) presented "Nutrient Availability, Macroalgal HABs, and Coral Reef Development in Southeast Florida: Changes in Latitudes, Changes in Attitudes." Guy Marion (University of Queensland, Australia) spoke about "Coral Isotopic Records of Unprecedented Land-Use Stress in Great Barrier Reef Coastal Communities." Curt Storlazzi (USGS, Santa Cruz, Calif.) discussed "The Influence of Sea-Level Rise on Fringing Reef Hydrodynamics: Insights from Southern Molokai, Hawaii."

Scheduled for 1 hour, the press conference ended up running almost 2 hours, as reporters questioned the participants in further detail after their presentations. Curt's part of the press conference focused on preliminary work being carried out by the USGS Coral Reef Project on the influence of predicted sea-level rise on coral reefs. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change conservatively predicts that sea level will rise 0.5 m (approx 1.5 ft) over the next 100 years. USGS scientists have combined field observations, theoretical calculations, and numerical modeling to better constrain how such sea-level rise might change the hydrodynamics around coral reefs and to determine the resulting impact on physical processes and sediment transport over a fringing reef. Their results suggest that an increase in water depth of 0.5 m will not only drastically change physical processes on the shallower parts of the reef, but will also likely affect the deeper parts.

Associated Press writer Tara Godvin, who attended the session and interviewed Curt for some time afterward, wrote an article titled "Scientists Say Rising Sea Threatens Coral," which was picked up and printed by the Seattle Post-Intelligencer (Feb. 23), the Orange County Register (Feb. 25; URL http://www.ocregister.com/ocregister/healthscience/atoz/article_1017141.php), the San Diego Union-Tribune (Mar. 3), and the Casper (Wyo.) Star-Tribune (Mar. 3). The Honolulu Star-Bulletin, one of Hawaii's largest newspapers, published two articles on the results presented at the press conference, including "Oceans still hold vast secrets" (Feb. 26) and "Rising sea levels threaten coral reefs" (Mar. 6).

Related Web Sites
2006 Ocean Sciences Meeting
American Geophysical Union (AGU), The Oceanography Society (TOS), and the American Society of Limnology and Oceanography (ASLO)
USGS Pacific Coral Reef Project
U.S. Geological Survey (USGS)
Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change
World Meteorological Organization (WMO) and United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP).
Oceans still hold vast secrets
Honolulu Star-Bulletin
Rising sea levels threaten coral reefs
Honolulu Star-Bulletin

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cover story:
Limited Reproductive Success for Endangered California Clapper Rail

USGS Studies Aid Puget Sound Recovery

Outreach USGS Scientist Interviewed About Threats to Coral Reefs

USGS FISC Participates in 2006 Marine Quest

Geography Team Visits USGS Woods Hole Science Center

USGS Participates in Career Fairs at MIT

USGS Scientist Attends Annual Field Trip for 20th Year

National Ocean Sciences Bowl Competitors Tour Laboratories in Woods Hole

WHSTEP Science and Math Safari Explores Use of Sound in Ocean Research

Meetings First International Symposium on Mangroves as Fish Habitat

USGS GIS 2006 Workshop

USGS Biologist Contributes Technical Expertise to Dive-Rescue Class

Awards USGS Biologist Honored by Fish and Wildlife Service

Staff New Oceanographic Data System Manager in Woods Hole

Publications June 2006 Publications List

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Updated December 02, 2016 @ 12:09 PM (JSS)