Maps about the ocean and tropical coral reefs. These maps are data heavy so just give them a little patience when loading them on mobile or slow connection. Click the view larger map link at the bottom of each map, to open in a new window.
This unfortunate map displays the current conditions that will most likely cause a coral bleaching event. Compiling live data from ocean monitoring stations, the colors represent the possibility of a coral bleaching event.
Note: This is a streaming live dataset of current conditions. It does not represent past bleaching events.
More about the Data:
Coral reefs are one of the most diverse and ecologically important areas of the world. However, many reefs, are threatened by ocean temperatures that are increasingly becoming warmer than the coral animals' natural tolerance. According to NOAA, when water is too warm, corals will expel the algae (zooxanthellae) living in their tissues causing the coral to turn completely white. This is called coral bleaching. When a coral bleaches, it is not dead. Corals can survive a bleaching event, but they are under more stress and are subject to mortality.
The NOAA Coral Reef Watch program uses satellite data to provide current reef environmental conditions to quickly identify areas at risk for coral bleaching. The station data displayed in this map are derived from satellite based measurements of ocean temperature. These "virtual stations" are not actual buoys or in situ stations transmitting data, rather a spatial analyses for reef locations around the world are derived from 5 km resolution raster data.
There are 213 points for the virtual stations around the world along with polygons describing the major tropical coral reef systems.
Each station has several variables:
· Alert Level: an index of the likelihood of coral bleaching, scaled from 0 (no heat stress) to 4 (coral mortality likely) based on the attributes below
· Sea surface temperature: average temperature of the ocean surface derived from satellite measurements
· Temperature anomaly: a comparison of the current surface temperature to the 1981-2010 historical average
· Hotspots: number of degrees above the coral's threshold tolerance
· Degree Heating Weeks: accumulated thermal stress experienced by corals
This map displays the major warm and cold ocean currents around the world and their general direction. Take the lazy river to another continent!
Also, don't throw trash or plastic in the ocean. Otherwise The Kraken will get you!