8 Jun 2017

Can 'super coral' save bleached reefs?

7:31 pm on 8 June 2017

The discovery of coral species living in extreme environments has led to research into whether coral reefs destroyed by global warming can be regrown.

Associate Professor David Suggett is the leader of the Future Reefs programme at Sydney's University of Technology.

He said the so called 'super coral' may be able to resist the bleaching that has so far destroyed a third of the coral on Australia's Great Barrier Reef.

"The big question we have at the moment is if we put these super corals out onto a reef, would they continue to grow as a normal coral, but importantly maintain their genetic superiority to resist stress? That's a question that is very much at the forefront of where we want to go now with our research."

David Suggett said regenerating coral that is resistant to climate change could benefit half a billion people worldwide, who depend on coral reefs for their livelihood.

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Photo: 123 RF