A year in honour of reefs, Planet Earth and potatoes

Shobana Kesava, Straits Times 5 Jan 08;

This year is also International Year of the Reef, according to the International Coral Reef Initiative (ICRI). This is the second global campaign to reduce threats to coral reefs and to motivate people to take action to protect them. The first ran in 1997.

Of the reefs in 93 countries, those in South and South-east Asia, East Africa and the Caribbean are among those at greatest risk of destruction.

Explaining its significance, Dr Nigel Goh, assistant director at the National Parks Board's Marine Diversity Centre, said coral reefs absorb carbon dioxide, a key factor in global warming.

'Coral reefs make an impact on climate change, acting as a major global carbon sink,' he said.

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