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Marine conservation organizations team up to conduct Indonesia coral reefs assessment

Khaled bin Sultan Living Oceans Foundation, Reef Check and World Conservation Union to examine damage to tsunami-affected coral reefs; mission set to start next week

Three leading marine conservation organizations will complete an extensive survey next week along the west coast of Aceh Province, Indonesia, to determine the impact of last year's devastating earthquake and tsunami on the region's coral reefs.

The Khaled bin Sultan Living Oceans Foundation, Reef Check and The World Conservation Union (IUCN) will carry out a two-week survey from October 17-31 of over 600 kilometers of Aceh's southwest coast to examine the damage to the coral reefs. The survey results will indicate how much of the coral reef structure was damaged by the December 2004 earthquake and tsunami and may provide some early insight into the natural recovery process including the success of corals to reproduce and grow.

"The health of the coral reef ecosystem along the Sumatra coastline is vital to the well-being of the people of Indonesia who depend upon the rich resources of the sea. This survey will help us understand the extent of the damage to the coral reefs from the tsunami and therefore guide management decisions to assist their natural recovery," said Capt. Philip Renaud, USN (Ret.), Executive Director of the Khaled bin Sultan Living Oceans Foundation.

"It is a notable accomplishment that three marine conservation organizations ? the Khaled bin Sultan Living Oceans Foundation, Reef Check and The World Conservation Union ? have joined forces to examine the extent of the earthquake and tsunami damage on the Sumatra marine ecosystem. This survey will stand as a model to show how environmental groups can and should work together to understand and preserve the marine ecosystem. It brings to life the Khaled bin Sultan Living Oceans Foundation's objective of conserving living oceans through the practice of Science Without Borders?," Capt. Renaud added.

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Source:Khaled bin Sultan Living Oceans Foundation


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