Even if you live far from a coral reef, you can still have an impact on reef health and its preservation. Among the most diverse ecosystems on Earth and home to over 25% of all sea life, coral reefs are a global pillar we can’t afford to lose. Today, 75% of the world’s coral reefs are threatened by human activities. Let not endangered become extinct. Learn what you can do to help!
1. Don’t buy wild.
Avoid purchasing products made of dead coral, seahorses, or any other sea creatures. Nature is not a souvenir! It takes corals years and years to form their intricate reef structures, which can be destroyed in a second to make a piece of jewelry. Coral reef ecosystems are already a gift — please don’t give them as presents.
2. Be a responsible captain.
Make sure the wastewater from your boat is properly treated so it doesn’t feed suffocating algae blooms. Always anchor in sandy areas away from coral reefs and seagrass beds. Boat anchors and chains can create long-lasting damage on reef ecosystems. One study found that one day after a cruise ship anchor dropped on a coral reef, an area measuring half the size of a football field was completely destroyed, with an additional quarter reduced to rubble. The study estimated coral recovery to take 50 years…
3. If you dive, don’t touch!
A heavy hand can injure delicate coral animals, while sediment stirred up from the bottom can smother corals. Wear reef-friendly sunscreen so you don’t leave a trail of potentially harmful chemicals. Best rule of thumb: take only pictures, leave only bubbles!
4. Eat sustainable seafood!
Coral reefs support over 25% of all sea life, which makes them hotspots for fisheries. Certain fishing practices, such as the use of dynamite and cyanide, can destroy corals in the attempt to catch more fish, faster. Make sure the fish you’re buying was caught sustainably—the same goes for aquarium fish. If you want an aquarium, know where your fish come from, and don’t start a liverock aquarium. Even if the living rock is harvested legally, its collection can still devastate reef ecosystems.
5. Clean up your act.
Reduce, reuse, recycle. Reduce the amount of fertilizer, plastic, and water you use. The less waste you produce, the less trash and runoff pollution that will eventually make its way into our ocean and coral reefs.
6. Demand action to protect coral reefs!
We organize petitions by zip code, so we can present them to officials at local, state, and national levels.