Roger B Griffis Roger.B.Griffis at
Fri Sep 27 12:14:10 EDT 2002

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) 02-126
CONTACT:  Patricia Viets, NOAA   (301) 457-5005
September 27, 2002


 A new Internet site designed as a single point of access for information on
reefs is now online, the Commerce Department’s National Oceanic and
Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) announced today.  The site, the Coral Reef
Information System, or CoRIS, provides data and information
derived from NOAA programs and projects. The site provides access to 19,000
aerial photos, 400 preview navigational
charts, tide stations, paleoclimatological studies, photo mosaics, coral
reef monitoring, bleaching reports,
and other information. Before CoRIS, users faced an array of more than 50
NOAA coral reef Web sites.

 CoRIS, backed by powerful search engines, offers a Web-enabled,
state-of-the-art information system using a single Web portal to gain easy
access to NOAA’s coral reef resources. By
cataloging and indexing metadata summarizing the actual data holdings, CoRIS
easily guides the user to the desired data
and information. CoRIS supports NOAA’s activities on the National Coral Reef
Task Force and NOAA’s implementation of the National Action Plan to Conserve
Coral Reefs.

 Corals are ancient animals that date back 400 million years. Over the past
25 million
years they have evolved into modern reef-building forms. Coral reefs are one
of the most diverse habitats in the
world and are considered the largest structures on Earth of biological
origin, rivaling old-growth forests in their
longevity. Reefs can be many hundreds of years old. Reefs provide important
protection for coastal communities from
storms, wave damage and erosion, as well as homes and nurseries for almost a
million species of plants, animals
and other organisms, including many that we rely on for food.



 Corals are now a cross-cutting theme throughout NOAA, and the recent
“National Action
Plan to Conserve Coral Reefs”
calls on NOAA and its Coral Reef Task Force partners to reduce or eliminate
the most
destructive human-derived threats
to coral reefs. The plan describes nine long-range, far-reaching strategies
to address
these threats:

• Expand and strengthen the network of coral reef marine protected areas and
• Reduce the adverse impacts of extractive uses such as overfishing;
• Reduce habitat destruction;
• Reduce pollution such as marine debris;
• Restore damaged reefs;
• Reduce global threats to reefs;
• Reduce impacts of international trade of coral reef resources;
• Improve interagency accountability and coordination; and
• Inform the public.

 The Coral Reef Information System Web site (CoRIS) is located at:

 NOAA is dedicated to enhancing economic security and national safety
through the
prediction and research of weather and climate-related events and providing
environmental stewardship of our nation’s coastal and marine resources. To
learn more about NOAA, please visit


  Roger B. Griffis <roger.b.griffis at>
  Policy Advisor
  National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
  U.S. Department of Commerce

  Roger B. Griffis
  Policy Advisor                                <roger.b.griffis at>
  National Oceanic and Atmospheric
  U.S. Department of Commerce
  NOAA/NOS/ORR Rm 10116 1305 East West Highway  Pager: 877-632-5370
  Silver Spring                                 Fax: 301-713-4389
  MD                                            Work: 301-713-2989 x 115
  Additional Information:
  Last Name     Griffis
  First Name    Roger
  Version       2.1

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