Researcher Devises Plan To Save Great Barrier Reef


Daniel Harrison, an oceanographer, has chalked out a plan for saving the Great Barrier Reef—something which scientists and researchers have always thought about but never been able to succeed at. The plan involves development of a technology called “cloud brightening,” which pushes the clouds towards reflecting more proportion of sun’s rays falling over the reef back to space. This technique can help to control increasing sea temperatures causing coral bleaching. Dr Harrison’s theory is equivalent to techniques such as cloud-seeding.

The technique involves pumping of sea water through filters, spraying it out of tiny nozzles forming minute water droplets. Further, a fan would be used to elevate these droplets into atmosphere, where evaporation of water would take place, which would leave behind a minute salt particle, to which condensation of other droplets of water would take place; thus brightening the existing clouds. The clouds formed due to this technique would also allow cooling of surface water temperature. Dr. Harrison stated that coral bleaching occurs due to sunlight and higher temperature, and the clouds formed due to this technique would be effective combatant to the bleaching. This research is however still in nascent stages, and no trials have taken place. However, if fully developed and tested, this technique may be able to provide answers to other such environmental issues.

Meanwhile, the odds of Cape Town becoming fully depleted of water, or the Day Zero as it is called, tripled due to the constant effects of global warming. In the absence of such human-induced global warming, the region would have faced such drought every three centuries; however, that has been reduced to a century now. With an increase in temperature by 1 degree since industrial age, another degree increase would make this drought likely every 33 years. Even though experts argue the growing influence of climate change on these conditions, others mention that the problems have been mostly created by the city itself, with authorities unable to manage water stocks for the constantly increasing population.

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