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Corals and acidification

A Healthy Mystery

Lush, diverse, healthy coral reefs in Palau are living where they shouldn't be—under lower-than-normal pH levels that are equal to what the ocean is projected to have by the end of this century if fossil fuel emissions continue at their present rate. WHOI scientist Anne Cohen and graduate student Hannah Barkley, partnering with scientists at the Palau International Coral Reef Center and The Nature Conservancy and with funding from The Tiffany & Co. Foundation, are studying these corals, in an effort to understand how they acquire resilience to ocean acdification. The information will be used to identify and protect coral reefs that have the best chance of surviving 21st-century climate change. (Photo by Hannah Barkley, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution)

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