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自分が読んで興味深く感じた英文記事を中心に取り上げる予定です

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サンゴ白化現象は英語では

 
今日のニュースで個人的に興味を引いたのはこちら。昨年宮古島の大きなサンゴ礁である八重干瀬に行ったのですが同じように白化現象でサンゴが死んでしまっていました。地元の人の話では台風が来ずに海温が下がらなかったことが原因だとか。

西表石垣国立公園 石西礁湖のサンゴ白化現象の調査結果について
 環境省那覇自然環境事務所では、11月から12月にかけて西表石垣国立公園の石西礁湖海域(石垣島と西表島の間)において本年度3回目のサンゴの白化現象についての調査を実施しました。今回お知らせする調査結果は本年度の最終調査結果であり、平均白化率(※)が91.4%であることを確認しました。
 9月から10月にかけて行った本年度2回目の調査結果(平成28年11月9日付け報道発表)と今回の調査結果を比較すると、全体が死亡した群体の割合は、56.7%から70.1%に増加したことが確認されました。また、白化していない群体については、3.0%から8.6%に増加したことが確認されました。


添付資料

英語ではbleachingと表現していました。AHDの方ではサンゴの白化現象の語義も載せてくれていました。

(アメリカンヘリテージ)
bleach
v.intr.
1. To act as or use a bleach.
2. To become white as a result of the loss of algal symbionts, usually following an environmental stress such as increased water temperature. Used of coral.


世界でも進行していることは承知の事実ですが、深刻度は増しているようです。昨年末にNatureが発表した今年の10人には豪グレートバリアリーフのサンゴの白化現象を研究している研究者が選ばれていました。

Nature’s 10
Ten people who mattered this year.

19 December 2016

TERRY HUGHES: Reef sentinel
A coral researcher sounded the alarm over massive bleaching at the Great Barrier Reef.
By Daniel Cressey

When Terry Hughes flew over the Great Barrier Reef in March, his heart sank at the sight of telltale pale patches just below the surface, where corals were dead or dying.

Hughes, director of the Australian Research Council’s (ARC’s) Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies in Townsville, says that he and his students wept after looking at the aerial surveys of the damage. The bleaching hit nearly all of the reef, with initial surveys showing 81% of the northern section suffering severely. It was the most devastating bleaching ever documented on the Great Barrier Reef — and part of a wider event that was harming corals across the Pacific.

The trigger for this year’s coral troubles in the Pacific was a strong El Niño warming pattern in the tropical part of that ocean. Abnormally high water temperatures prompt corals to expel the symbiotic zooxanthellae algae that provide them with much of their food — and their colour. Some corals can recover after bleaching, but others die. Follow-up studies in October and November found that 67% of ­shallow-water corals in the 700-kilometre northern section of the Great Barrier Reef had died.


まさに世界的現象で2年前に世界的に深刻な状況にあることをアメリカ政府が発表していたようです。日本のこともさらっとですが2016年に広がったと触れています。

Corals throughout the world have struggled in the past couple of years, as global temperatures have repeatedly hit record highs. In October 2015, the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration declared that a global bleaching event was happening as coral reefs in Hawaii, Papua New Guinea and the Maldives began to succumb.

This year, the bleaching spread to Australia, Japan and other parts of the Pacific. Researchers say that, as climate change drives up baseline temperatures, bleaching will afflict reefs more frequently. Under some scenarios, this could happen so often that most corals can no longer survive.

2015年の米国政府のレポートについては当時のNatureも記事にしていました。

Corals worldwide hit by bleaching
Warm ocean waters combine with El Niño to turn reefs a stark white.

Alexandra Witze
08 October 2015

先ほどの研究者のインタビューもNatureは掲載しています。地球温暖化が主要因だと話していますね。

Coral crisis: Great Barrier Reef bleaching is “the worst we’ve ever seen”
Marine ecologist Terry Hughes talks about the ongoing bleaching of the world’s most famous coral reef.

Daniel Cressey
13 April 2016

Has comparable bleaching happened before?
This is the third bleaching event that the barrier reef has experienced at a large scale, after 1998 and 2002, but this is much worse in terms of the number of reefs that are severely bleached. It could have been worse: we were lucky enough to have an ex-cyclone [the remains of cyclone Winston, which had passed over Fiji] come to the Queensland coast. It brought cloud to the middle and southern barrier reef, which cooled it down. Without that cyclone, the whole reef would have bleached as severely as the northern part.

The temperature on the barrier reef has slowly been rising as a result of global warming, decade by decade. Today, the northern barrier reef is half a degree centigrade warmer than it was 30 years ago. The southern part is closer to a full degree centigrade warmer. El Niño events happen on a regular basis. But it wasn’t until 1998 that they started to cause bleaching events. It’s the underlying baseline temperature that’s turning El Niño events into climate extremes for the reef.


環境省も「国内のサンゴ礁保全の取り組み」をしているように、対策そのものを研究している研究者もいるようです。下記に紹介されている研究ではサンゴとそれを取り巻く環境を人の住む社会を含めて総合的に見て、どのような地域でサンゴがよく保全されているのかを見ていっています。

Mass coral death drives efforts to identify resilient reefs
Widespread bleaching gives scientists new urgency to avert decline of key ocean ecosystems.

Daniel Cressey
15 June 2016

Common factors
The research team, led by Joshua Cinner, a social scientist who studies coral-reef systems at the Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies at James Cook University in Townsville, Australia, based its analysis on data that describe conditions at more than 2,500 reefs. The researchers used information on a reef’s habitat, depth, nearby human population and amount of fishing to model how many fish could live at each site.

The bright spots shared several characteristics, including high levels of local engagement in resource management, high dependence on local marine resources, and protective cultural taboos — such as excluding fishers from outside the local village.

Cinner’s work also suggests that the proximity of urban centres is a key driver of change in marine systems. It can damage reef systems that seem to be performing well to the naked eye, such as sites in the northwestern Hawaiian Islands that are part of a well-policed marine reserve but are still classified as a dark spot.

宮古島のツアーの人は今年はどうしようと頭を抱えていました。自然相手なので即効性のある対策をすぐに打てるわけではないので難しい問題ですね。
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