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Online Meeting: Impacts of the 4th Global Bleaching Event on UNESCO World Heritage-Listed Coral Reefs

Wednesday, 22 May 2024
© The Ocean Agency / Ocean Image Bank

The world is currently experiencing its fourth global coral bleaching event, according to National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and the International Coral Reef Initiative’s (ICRI) network of coral reef scientists - the second this decade. This mass bleaching event is estimated to have already affected at least 30% of the 29 UNESCO World Heritage-Listed coral reefs.

On 22 May 2024, the UNESCO World Heritage Marine Programme will convene experts from NOAA and ICRI as well as local management teams from the 29 World Heritage-Listed coral reefs to discuss the scope of impact of the current mass bleaching event and share best practices about the most effective ways in securing bleaching preparedness at the local level.

UNESCO’s 2017 assessment, indicating that all World Heritage-designated reefs would undergo mass bleaching events twice per decade by 2040, is now beginning to receive confirmation. The virtual meeting will assist sites in acquiring a better understanding of the most innovative bleaching alert systems and coral bleaching preparedness practices, so that they can rapidly deploy monitoring and evaluation measures during future global mass bleaching events.

Several times per year, UNESCO's World Heritage Marine Programme provides an exclusive online platform where managers from the 50 marine World Heritage sites connect and share practical successes in tackling key conservation challenges.

Due to their status as the world’s flagship marine protected areas, marine World Heritage sites are uniquely positioned to drive change and innovation, set new global standards in conservation excellence, and serve as beacons of hope in a changing ocean. The online meetings are made possible thanks to the support of the French Biodiversity Agency and the Great Barrier Reef Foundation.

Participation is upon invitation only.

Featured Marine World Heritage Site Managers and Experts

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Wednesday, 22 May 2024

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