El Niño has been declared and marine heatwaves have already swept through the Northern Hemisphere in the hottest summer on record. Rising sea temperatures threaten the worlds coral reefs.
This summer, you can put time back on our side by helping to strengthen and restore the Reef. Plant a coral today to help protect the Reef for future generations.
You can help restore and protect the Reef.
Donate to plant a coral today.
Plant a coral and put time on our side.
To protect the Great Barrier Reef today, we must repair the damage that’s already been done to it due to climate change and other threats. We must also explore and develop new ways to build its resilience to the challenges of tomorrow.
With the support of donors like you, we are already restoring important areas of the Reef by planting coral fragments, as well as through Coral IVF – we call these Corals for Today.
We’re also developing a ‘Reef Restoration Toolkit’ that delivers an increase in coral planting, as well as coral that can withstand warmer water – these are our Corals for Tomorrow.
Why plant corals?
It’s easy to think of the Great Barrier Reef as a timeless wonder, but the sad reality is that the Reef is on borrowed time due to climate change. Coral planting helps buy our Reef time while the world works to reduce emissions.
Why are coral reefs important?
Our planet needs healthy oceans to survive, and healthy oceans need healthy coral reefs. Our oceans provide 50% of the world’s oxygen, and their coral reefs support 25% of all marine life, including fish, dolphins, whales, and marine turtles. Meanwhile, coastal blue carbon ecosystems store carbon dioxide 30-50 times faster than terrestrial forests.
Coral reefs are the beating heart of our oceans, they provide every second breath of air we take and are a nursery and breeding ground for a quarter of all marine life including fish, dolphins, whales, and marine turtles.
Where will the corals be planted?
We target our coral restoration efforts on critical local ecosystems, as well as on reefs that are best networked to have flow-on benefits to nearby reefs.
We currently work at six locations that have been identified as critical local ecosystems. These reefs are in the Whitsundays and off the coast of Townsville and Cairns. Your support will help us plant corals across several degraded sites.
Corals for Today: What are coral fragments?
Coral fragments are an important part of our Corals for Today program. This reef restoration method involves collecting broken pieces of coral which are then grown in underwater nurseries before being delivered onto damaged areas of the Reef.
The coral fragments are attached using an innovative device known as a Coralclip®. This method has an impressive coral survival rate of 85%. Thousands of corals have already successfully been planted on the Great Barrier Reef using this method, but there’s still a lot of work to be done.
Corals for Today: What is Coral IVF?
Coral IVF is a world-leading coral restoration technique and another important aspect of our Corals for Today program. Coral spawn is collected from healthy reefs and then reared in specially-designed floating pools. Once they’re ready, the baby corals are delivered onto damaged reefs to restore and repopulate them.
Coral IVF delivers greater volumes of coral larvae onto reefs, giving a helping hand to nature and boosting the number of coral babies that survive to adulthood.
Corals for Tomorrow: what is heat-tolerant coral?
With water temperatures rising, we need to find new ways of helping corals adapt to warmer waters. Your donations help drive our Corals for Tomorrow program as we research ways to breed and outplant heat-tolerant corals to ensure reefs can withstand the rising temperatures caused by climate change.
With the support of generous people like you, Australia’s marine science community is developing a ‘Reef Restoration Toolkit’. This will deliver a 30-fold increase in coral plantings, and help corals withstand warming waters.
Coral IVF leads to a remarkable transformation on the Reef.
Professor Peter Harrison is a coral ecologist and the Director of the Marine Ecology Research Centre at Southern Cross University. In 2016, thanks to funding from the Great Barrier Reef Foundation, Professor Harrison began trialling a world-leading Coral IVF technique on the Great Barrier Reef.
Coral spawn was collected from healthy reefs and raised in specially-designed pools before being delivered onto damaged areas around Heron Island. Since then, 22 large coral colonies have survived a bleaching event, grown to maturity, and produced their very first batch of baby corals. This is the first time a breeding population has ever been established on the Great Barrier Reef using Coral IVF.
“This is a thrilling result,” says Professor Harrison. “The larvae generated from these spawning corals have dispersed within the Heron Island lagoon and may settle on patches of reef nearby, helping to further restore reef patches that have been impacted by climate change.”
Below is one Coral from our first batch of Coral IVF babies, which we grew from microscopic larvae and planted on the Reef in 2016. Credit: Southern Cross University.
Your gift will not only help with this incredible project, but it will also help in many other ways. We work across a number of projects for the Reef, and your kindness makes it possible for us to support them all.
Other ways to donate
Please call 1800 427 300 to donate or for assistance
Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to receive the details to donate directly to the Great Barrier Reef Foundation Public Fund
Please send your donation cheque to: Great Barrier Reef Foundation, GPO Box 1362, Brisbane QLD 4001
In the USA?
Make a tax-deductible donation in the United States.