An Uncertain Future
On June 13th I had the opportunity to snorkel over what has been an incredible coral reef restoration project. The project takes place at Pemuteran Bay in Bali, Indonesia. Biorock technology is the driving force behind this restoration project, as it uses low voltage electrical currents to attract minerals to the metal structures that are placed in the water. Surprisingly, the electrical currents are not harmful to any of the oceanic life, nor are they harmful to humans. This technology is very exciting because it showed tremendous success after implementation years ago. So all seems well right? Wrong. Although the Biorock technology was something that seemed unstoppable, a persistent problem still threatens the successful of the Biorocks into the future. As I snorkeled over the reef restoration project, I couldn't help but notice the color of the coral. We were given a presentation on the Biorock project in Pemuteran Bay by the manager of the project just before we ventured out to explore it on our own. In the video he showed us, the coral that had attached itself to the structures were all beautiful bright colors of blues, yellows, etc. However, during my snorkel experience the only bright colors I saw were those of the animals living around the reef. All of the coral had returned to a grey, brown, or white color. This is due to coral bleaching, something that is caused by rising ocean temperatures and devastating coral reefs around the globe. The social innovation of this entire project has been truly incredible, and for a long time very successful. But we are still faced with the sad reality that there may just be no way around the indefinite bleaching of coral, even after efforts to help new coral form. The global warming crisis is persistent and so real. Despite the efforts of this project, it is OUR responsibility to take action to reduce the global warming still happening now. That may seem like a daunting task for many, and may seem simply impossible to others. But it is our civil duty to at least try. The time is now, and it is up to us to be the change we wish to see in this world. I challenge you all today to consider how you can make a difference. What simple life change can you make to help improve the problem at hand? Whatever it may be, it could be a very important start to helping ensure a different future for our oceans and reefs than the uncertain one we are facing now.