[Coral-List] Resilience? After Heat Stroke?

James M Cervino cnidaria at earthlink.net
Sun Feb 26 12:34:28 EST 2006

Dear Coral Reef Scientists,

Alina's post states the truth as it address our cultural behavior in 
the USA and how this may be having a negative impact on the reefs 
throughout the world.  We all agree that thermal stress is the number 
one cause of coral mortality coupled with localized deforestation and 
anthropogenic nutrient enrichment. However, it was not long ago that 
there were people out there (marine scientists) that refused to admit 
that global warming induced thermal heat shock is the number one 
threat reefs are facing today.  Reef Resilience! Are we fooling 
ourselves? With the growing population and the types of vehicles we 
use to transport our kiddies to soccer practice we will continue to 
produce more heat trapping gasses into the atmosphere that are 
directly correlated with higher sea surface temperatures. This will 
have a serious effect on tropical corals that are sensitive and 
already threatened. The major reef builders of the Pacific are not 
resilient, and will not be resistant to thermal stress and coral 
disease. We can say good-by to the diversity of corals I am looking 
at in Jen Veron's book that is sitting in front of me on my desk, 
especially if we all are not vocal about the Energy Policy produced 
by the Whitehouse this year.  Were there any atmospheric and marine 
scientists acting as advisors quoted in this Energy Policy brief?  We 
as marine scientists should be outraged as we all know now that reefs 
will not be resilient to the changing oceanographic conditions in the 
next decade.  So the question is, how will we address this as marine 
scientists?  Create more MPAs? I don't care how many MPAs we create 
throughout the world, if we are not going to get serious about global 
warming and anthropogenic nutrient enrichment we are wasting time. 
Will MPAs protect corals from heat stroke or nutrient enrichment? Are 
corals protected from global warming and nutrient pollution and is 
this addressed in MPAs ?  Below are some vital statistics regarding 
how the USA is addressing global warming induced climate change:

In 2004, China consumed 6.5 million barrels of oil per day. The 
United States consumed 20.4 million barrels, and demand is rising as 
a result of economic growth and American cars. It has been estimated 
that the bulk of the imports are going directly to SUVs.  SUVs made 
up 5% of the American arsenal of cars in 1990; currently they make up 

U.S. oil imports are at the highest ever, 55%.  Department of Energy 
projections show imports rising to 70 percent by 2025. Interpreting 
this to a global scale the United States transportation sector 
produces about 8% of world global warming pollution and accounts for 
18 percent of an increasingly tight world oil market each year 
according to the Energy Foundation and the Association for Peak 
Oil&Gas (http://www.peakoil.net/).

If American cars averaged 40 miles per gallon, we would soon reduce 
consumption by 2 million to 3 million barrels of oil a day. That 
could translate into a sustained price drop of more than $20 a 
barrel. And getting cars to be that efficient is easy. This was not 
addressed in the recent energy bill recently passed by Congress.

Global oil use = 31.5 billion barrels per year
One barrel oil = 42 U.S. gallons
One cubic foot = 7.48 U.S. gallons
One cubic mile = 147.2 billion cubic feet

Country Barrels of oil per person annually
  United States  25
  Japan	  14.0
  Spain	  13.8
  Mexico 6.0
  Brazil 3.5
  China 1.5
  India	 0.8 
Source: Goldman Sachs, Energy Weekly, August 11, 1999

(Millions of barrels per day): Source DOE

United States: 19.993
Japan: 5.423
China: 4.854
Germany: 2.814
Russia: 2.531
South Korea: 2.126
Brazil: 2.123
Canada: 2.048
France: 2.040
India: 2.011
Mexico: 1.932
Italy: 1.881
United Kingdom: 1.699
Spain: 1.465
SaudiArabia: 1.415
Iran: 1.109
Indonesia: 1.063
Netherlands: .881
Australia: .879
Taiwan: .846

Dr. James M. Cervino, MS, Ph.D.
Marine Biologist
Department of Biological & Health Sciences
Pace University New York NYC
Phone: (917) 620-5287
Web site: http://www.globalcoral.org

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