SWIMMERS’ SUNSCREEN KILLING OFF CORAL
Ker Than / Nat Geo News

The sunscreen that you dutifully slather on before a swim on the beach may be protecting your body, but the chemicals are also killing coral reefs worldwide.
Four commonly found sunscreen ingredients can awaken dormant viruses in the symbiotic algae called zooxanthellae that live inside reef-building coral species.
The chemicals cause the viruses to replicate until their algae hosts explode, spilling viruses into the surrounding seawater, where they can infect neighboring coral communities.
Zooxanthellae provide coral with food energy through photosynthesis and contribute to the organisms’ vibrant color. Without them, the coral “bleaches”—turns white—and dies.
"The algae that live in the coral tissue and feed these animals explode or are just released by the tissue, thus leaving naked the skeleton of the coral," said study leader Roberto Danovaro of the Polytechnic University of Marche in Italy.
The researchers estimate that 4,000 to 6,000 metric tons of sunscreen wash off swimmers annually in oceans worldwide, and that up to 10 percent of coral reefs are threatened by sunscreen-induced bleaching.
Activated Viruses
Danovaro and his team studied the effects of sunscreen exposure on coral samples from reefs in the Pacific, Atlantic, and Indian Oceans.
Even low levels of sunscreen, at or below the typical amount used by swimmers, could activate the algae viruses and completely bleach coral in just four days, the results showed.
Seawater surrounding coral exposed to sunscreen contained up to 15 times more viruses than unexposed samples.
Several brands of popular sunscreens were tested and all had four ingredients in common: paraben, cinnamate, benzophenone, and a camphor derivative.

Photo: Normal coral (left) exposed to ultraviolet filters found in sunscreen “bleaches” white (right) when the algae living inside it die.
Courtesy Department of Marine Science, Polytechnic University of Marche, Ancona, Italy

SWIMMERS’ SUNSCREEN KILLING OFF CORAL

Ker Than / Nat Geo News

The sunscreen that you dutifully slather on before a swim on the beach may be protecting your body, but the chemicals are also killing coral reefs worldwide.

Four commonly found sunscreen ingredients can awaken dormant viruses in the symbiotic algae called zooxanthellae that live inside reef-building coral species.

The chemicals cause the viruses to replicate until their algae hosts explode, spilling viruses into the surrounding seawater, where they can infect neighboring coral communities.

Zooxanthellae provide coral with food energy through photosynthesis and contribute to the organisms’ vibrant color. Without them, the coral “bleaches”—turns white—and dies.

"The algae that live in the coral tissue and feed these animals explode or are just released by the tissue, thus leaving naked the skeleton of the coral," said study leader Roberto Danovaro of the Polytechnic University of Marche in Italy.

The researchers estimate that 4,000 to 6,000 metric tons of sunscreen wash off swimmers annually in oceans worldwide, and that up to 10 percent of coral reefs are threatened by sunscreen-induced bleaching.

Activated Viruses

Danovaro and his team studied the effects of sunscreen exposure on coral samples from reefs in the Pacific, Atlantic, and Indian Oceans.

Even low levels of sunscreen, at or below the typical amount used by swimmers, could activate the algae viruses and completely bleach coral in just four days, the results showed.

Seawater surrounding coral exposed to sunscreen contained up to 15 times more viruses than unexposed samples.

Several brands of popular sunscreens were tested and all had four ingredients in common: paraben, cinnamate, benzophenone, and a camphor derivative.

Photo: Normal coral (left) exposed to ultraviolet filters found in sunscreen “bleaches” white (right) when the algae living inside it die.

Courtesy Department of Marine Science, Polytechnic University of Marche, Ancona, Italy

  1. nikokundesu ha reblogueado esto desde griseus y ha añadido:
    White people fucking up the world at all times.
  2. jwilso ha reblogueado esto desde griseus
  3. onlymarinepermitted ha reblogueado esto desde griseus y ha añadido:
    This is pretty serious. Make sure to take this into consideration. Coral bleaching is most definitely nothing to joke...
  4. echinodarm ha reblogueado esto desde griseus
  5. simplyshade ha reblogueado esto desde secretofthesea
  6. likiteesplit ha reblogueado esto desde frau-maus
  7. iammachiavellisprince ha reblogueado esto desde w-indigo-vertigo
  8. w-indigo-vertigo ha reblogueado esto desde frau-maus
  9. frau-maus ha reblogueado esto desde griseus
  10. benjaminthecoathanger ha reblogueado esto desde nofasciststate
  11. nofasciststate ha reblogueado esto desde iseulttoinjury
  12. iseulttoinjury ha reblogueado esto desde griseus
  13. lehighideas ha reblogueado esto desde cursinginchurch y ha añadido:
    Everything is interrelated. How will your engineering designs impact the environment and people around it?
  14. okerwin ha reblogueado esto desde justkatethanks
  15. diakonisa ha reblogueado esto desde blo
  16. magnusrayne ha reblogueado esto desde thestrawberrycupcakeimp
  17. gasmasquerade ha reblogueado esto desde the-king-of-ponytails y ha añadido:
    :( But what do we do? I mean…I kind of need to wear sunscreen. Is there an alternative?
  18. aqqreqate ha reblogueado esto desde animalcrown
  19. sweetamor ha reblogueado esto desde candiedbrown y ha añadido:
    I had to repost since I’m a biologist in training. Gotta loves da algae ❤
  20. candiedbrown ha reblogueado esto desde animalcrown y ha añadido:
    Get it together
  21. tactlessmalcontent ha reblogueado esto desde thebigblackwolfe
  22. wadinginastrawberryocean ha reblogueado esto desde soradiesinkh3
  23. ptrcls ha reblogueado esto desde qiowdeactivated
  24. other-worlds ha reblogueado esto desde jessicakex y ha añadido:
    Good thing I never wear it because ALL CHEMICALS FROM MAKEUP, HAIR DYE, ECT finds its way to the ocean.
  25. jessicakex ha reblogueado esto desde brandef y ha añadido:
    This is awful!
  26. zazp ha reblogueado esto desde griseus
  27. hellojolyn ha reblogueado esto desde killmyblues
  28. goddessinarmor ha reblogueado esto desde queen-pharaoh
  29. nostravita ha reblogueado esto desde tinyviciousporkchop