Functions of Coral Reefs for the Environment


KOMPAS.com – Coral reefs are one of the three components that make up coastal ecosystems. Coastal and shallow marine ecosystems consist of mangroves, seagrass beds, and coral reefs.

Coral reefs are a group of coral animals that live in symbiosis with algae called coral reefs zooxanthliae.

Coral reefs are ecosystems that are very sensitive to environmental changes, such as temperature, sedimentation, and touch. Therefore, global warming also has an indirect impact on the destruction of coral reefs.

In addition, rising sea surface temperatures also trigger coral bleaching (coral bleaching) followed by the death of coral reefs up to 90 percent.

Coral reefs are an ecosystem that we must protect because they have many functions for life and the environment. Reporting from the Ministry of Maritime Affairs and Fisheries, below are the functions of coral reefs.

1. Controlling Earth’s climate

More than 70 percent of the Earth’s surface is covered by water. The sea plays a role in capturing carbon dioxide contained in the atmosphere. This ability is due to the balance of marine ecosystems, including coral reefs.

If the marine ecosystem is damaged, the ocean’s ability to absorb carbon dioxide will decrease. The impact is not only on Earth’s climate, but also on the survival of other marine creatures.

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Also read: 7 Benefits of Mangrove Forests for the Environment and Life

2. Habitat for small animals

Together with mangroves and seagrass beds, coral reefs are ideal habitats for small animals such as seahorses, groupers, baronang fish, and other small fish.

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In addition, coral reefs are also a source of food for these animals.

3. Resist the waves and ocean waves

Coral reefs are able to withstand and slow down the waves that come to the coast. This is useful for preventing coastal erosion and reducing the impact in the event of a large wave such as a tsunami.

4. Marine tourism

Coral reefs have very beautiful and diverse shapes and colors. This makes it has the potential for marine tourism.

However, it is wise to make this a tourist attraction because coral reefs are an ecosystem that is very sensitive to changes in the environment and touch.

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