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A coral reef with some bleached corals

Great Barrier Reef Temperatures “Alarmingly High”, Bringing Unprecedented Heat Stress to Corals

A new paper by the NOAA Coral Reef Watch (CRW) program, an initiative supported by the ESSIC-administered Cooperative Institute for Satellite Earth System Studies (CISESS), shows that Australia’s Great Barrier Reef (GBR) started the 2021-2022 summer season with more accumulated oceanic heat stress than ever before in the satellite record (i.e., 1985 to the present). As of December 14, 2021, NOAA CRW’s daily global 5km satellite coral bleaching heat stress products indicated that instantaneous heat stress and accumulated heat stress over the prior 12 weeks were unprecedented on the GBR.

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