Save Coral Reefs! Reduce greenhouse gas emissions now!

Save Coral Reefs! Reduce greenhouse gas emissions now!

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Mission Coral started this petition

Coral reefs are homes to thousands of species. They are biodiversity hotspots and one of the most diverse ecosystems on the planet. 

Unfortunately, the burning of fossil fuels and other human activities emits greenhouse gases like carbon and methane, which increases the number of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. While the greenhouse effect is a natural phenomenon, excess carbon and methane emissions (from humans) are warming the planet and our ocean. As a result, the ocean temperature is rising.

Coral is very sensitive to ocean temperature and grows stressed as the temperature rises. As a stress response, the coral polyps expel the symbiotic zooxanthellae from their tissues. The zooxanthellae give coral its color. As a result, without the algae in their tissues, it leaves the transparent coral polyps and the calcium carbonate skeleton beneath. This is a process known as coral bleaching. Coral bleaching essentially starves the polyps because the zooxanthellae provide them with food. As a result of prolonged periods of starvation, the polyps begin to die. 

Coral bleaching is detrimental not only to coral reefs but the animals and marine life it provides for. Corals are also beneficial to us as they provide economic opportunities and jobs, pharmaceuticals, medicines, and protect coastlines from storms.

In 2005, "The United States lost half of its coral reefs in the Caribbean in one year due to massive beaching events," according to NOAA. 

Due to global warming, in December 2014, coral bleaching led to a devastating loss of coral reefs in the Pacific. It triggered what Climate Signals calls "the Earth's third global coral bleaching event," which started in 2014 and became worldwide in 2015. 

As citizens, we have a responsibility to change our own daily habits. However, we are also responsible for communicating with our local governments and people in power to hear our voices and our concerns about the environment.

In order to stop the rise of ocean temperature, we must drastically reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

Here are three of our proposals:

1. Going Solar

California has already made progress with solar panels. Now, it's time the government encourages more people to move towards this sustainable renewable energy. One way is to provide monetary incentives. For example, to low-income households, the government can offer cash incentives and tax credits, and reductions to others. These methods will encourage people to install solar panels in their own homes and promote awareness of global warming and the action steps we can take.

2. Water Saving Systems

A lot of energy goes into pumping and treating the water we use. To save energy and water, we can use the grey water system. Using gravity, the grey water system delivers safe and used water to agriculture (not food). Tax credit is a potential incentive to encourage people to install these kinds of systems, which is key to saving water and energy.

3. Emission-Free Vehicles

We are currently making rapid advances in technology, such as the manufacturing of emission-free vehicles. You and your families might currently own emission-free cars too! We need to get more people to choose emission-free over gas or diesel. The government can urge more car industries to provide tax credits and incentives to encourage people to go emission-free. 

We have a voice, and we will demand action from the government until we are heard. We are against the clock. California must reduce or cut carbon and methane emissions and switch to renewable sources as soon as possible. 

YOU can make a change! Your support may save the coral reefs and the species that depend on them. Join us!

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