Steph Nitschke

Marine Scientist, Manly, NSW

Published 5th October 2021

I’ve been looking at coral reef ecosystems and how they deal with warming waters and stress.

All my research was at Heron Island on the south of the Great Barrier Reef.
Sometimes you spend years going to the same field site. You know every piece of coral so well. And then when you go back, and there’s bleaching everywhere — it’s devastating. It’s like coming back to a graveyard.
The biggest thing for me, and our oceans, is to stop climate damage. We need to urgently reduce climate pollution — stop burning coal and gas — or our ocean is going to keep warming and become more acidic. And coral just can’t cope with this.

"We all need to use our collective voices for this amazing earth. She’s been screaming out to us with droughts, floods, fires… We’re listening now."

Steph Nitschke

Marine Scientist, Manly, NSW

The big thing our leaders need to do is recognise climate change is not just affecting the environment.

It's impacting people, nature [and] the economy. They need to understand the urgency in reducing carbon dioxide emissions. Our government needs to rise to the occasion, replace burning coal with clean energy and really address climate change.

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