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Speak Up for Our Coral Reefs!

16,259 signatures toward our 30,000 Goal

54.20% Complete

Sponsor: Greatergood.org

We must cut our carbon dioxide emissions to save this biologically diverse ecosystem!

Without urgent action, nearly ALL the world's coral reefs could be lost by 2050 to a phenomenon known as "coral bleaching." [1]

Coral reefs are among the most biologically diverse ecosystems on the planet, home to 25% of all marine life [4]. However, rising ocean temperatures are causing coral reefs to turn white and suffocate -- a phenomenon called 'coral bleaching.' As we emit more carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, we cause ocean water to warm, which causes corals to expel the vital algae living in their tissues. The Great Barrier Reef in Australia is a case in point -- amid record heat in 2015, a whopping 93% of the Reef experienced bleaching, according to the ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies [2]. This means the vast majority of the reef is dying; at immediate risk of extinction.

With 2016 officially declared the hottest year on record [3] our coral reefs are more vulnerable than ever. If we don't take action now, we will continue to see fish and invertebrate populations die in record numbers, and expose hundreds of millions of people to decreasing food security and increased poverty. By prioritizing clean energy and sustainability, we can minimize our carbon dioxide emissions and prevent higher ocean temperatures. Together, we can save our coral reefs.

Help us NOW by writing to the head of the Environmental Protection Agency, asking for a commitment to our international pledge to cut carbon dioxide emissions in order to mitigate the effects of climate change and save coral reefs.

Want to Do More?

After signing the petition, you can do more to help reefs by donating to FORCE BLUE, a non-profit which trains select Special Operations veterans to preserve and restore coral reefs by transplanting coral to ensure its survival. Learn more about the project here.

Works Cited

[1] Nearly half marine population lost in last 40 years Jennifer Gray - http://www.cnn.com/2015/09/17/world/oceans-report/index.html

[2] Study: 93% of Great Barrier Reef bleached Euan McKirdy - http://www.cnn.com/2016/04/20/asia/great-barrier-reef-coral-bleaching/index.html

[3] 2016 declared Earth's hottest year on record Rob McElwee - http://www.aljazeera.com/news/2017/01/2016-declared-earth-hottest-year-record-170119110643654.html

[4] Coral reefs http://wwf.panda.org/about\_our\_earth/blue\_planet/coasts/coral\_reefs/

[5] Fishing Bans Create a Glimmer of Hope on the Great Barrier Reef Sarah Zielinski - http://www.smithsonianmag.com/science-nature/fishing-bans-create-glimmer-hope-great-barrier-reef-180954760/

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The Petition:

Dear EPA Administrator,

I strongly urge the you to stay committed to our pledge to cut greenhouse gas emissions at least 26 percent below 2005 levels by 2030 under the Paris Agreement -- despite recent political actions. This would keep average global surface temperatures below a 2°C warming relative to the pre-industrial period, which will save our coral reefs from "coral bleaching" caused by ocean warming and acidification from fossil fuels.

If we don't reduce our CO2 emissions, coral reefs will continue to die off in record numbers.  We must ensure that more of the reef is protected from any kind of fishing.

Together, we can save these coral reefs and all who depend on them, both marine and human life. I urge you to take action in lowering our country's CO2 emissions in order to save the coral reefs.


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