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  • Dave Groebel

The Importance Of Coral Reefs

Coral Reef

Coral reefs are some of the most important and diverse ocean habitats on the planet. They provide a significant portion of the Earth’s biodiversity, often referred to as the “rainforest of the sea.” Marine biologists estimate that nearly twenty-five percent of all marine species live in and around coral reefs, making them one of the most unique treasures our planet has to offer.

Unfortunately, climate change is wreaking havoc on our coral reef populations. Warmer ocean waters, pH imbalance in the waters of many coral reef coasts, and other environmental factors prohibit coral reefs from developing their hard exoskeletons that protect tender marine lifeforms.

Interdependence on reef populations

We as humans have no idea how interdependent we really are on coral reefs. The rich biodiversity of these populations affects other wildlife that we depend on for our survival. Without these delicate structures in place, we run the risk of significant environmental impact that could have long-reaching consequences for our planet. Here are some more reasons why coral reefs are an important and essential part of life on our glorious planet.

  1. Coral reefs provide protection. From the minuscule shrimp to the large aquatic predator, many sea creatures find food and protection on our coral reefs. If these habitats do not thrive, other fish and wildlife will cease to exist.

  2. Coral reefs protect coastal land. Coral reefs are able to slow down the flow of water. Interestingly enough, these reefs naturally formed where ocean currents tend to be their most volatile. These rigid structures help to prevent beach erosion and protect coastal ecosystems, keeping coastal communities intact.

  3. Coral reefs are natural sources of water filtration. A coral reef cannot exist in murky, polluted water. Coral and sponges can consume many of these particulates, filtering them out of ocean water. This newly recycled, crystalline water contributes to clean air and land surrounding reefs, making for truly breathtaking scenery.

  4. Coral reefs regulate carbon dioxide levels in ocean water. Coral’s hard limestone shell is formed when ocean water processes carbon dioxide. This processing is a critical part of balancing carbon dioxide levels on Earth, which significantly impacts all living things on the planet.

  5. Coral reefs are a very important food source for us. Since the dawn of civilization, humans have consumed fish as a source of protein. An abundance of delicious sea life thrives in healthy coral reefs, making them an essential part of our lives as they help us achieve our nutritional requirements. The fishing industry is intimately connected to coral reef life and vitality, as it affects their ability to yield a healthy crop of fish.

  6. Coral reefs are a vital part of the tourism industry. Coral reefs play a significant role in the tourism industry, helping to create and protect many of the world’s most breathtaking tourist destinations. Without the presence of clear waters and the opportunity to explore these aquatic environments, local tourist communities would cease to thrive. Those who visit these delicate marine environments gain a new respect for their beauty, sophistication, and intricacy as they realize what a vital role, they play in sustaining healthy life on this planet.

Alpha Submarine Adventures: Raising Awareness

The purpose of Alpha Submarine Adventures is two-fold. We will provide you with a top-notch vacation experience while educating all on the importance of protecting and preserving our coral reefs. Enjoy a dive and a close-up view of some of the most diverse, unique aquatic life this planet offers. This fall, tours take place off the coast of beautiful St. Thomas in the Virgin Islands. Visit for more information.

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