Satellites Show Coral Bleaching On Great Barrier Reef

The European Space Agency (ESA) has produced images showing the bleaching of the Great Barrier Reef.

The Great Barrier Reef lost nearly 30% of its corals in 2016 alone – due to bleaching. Satellite data is leading the way in monitoring coralwith the Commonwealth countries now offering free satellite data amongst member states and the US NOAA already delivering a global coral bleaching alert system 


Satelite Images showing Coral Bleaching 2016 and 2017

Images from the Copernicus Sentinel-2A satellite captured on 8 June 2016 and 23 February 2017 show coral turning bright white for Adelaide Reef, Central Great Barrier Reef (from ESA)


Satelite Data Showing Time Series of Coral Bleaching

Sentinel-2 images for Adelaide Reef, Central Great Barrier Reef were analysed for bottom reflectance – or brightness. An increase in reflectance in early 2017 suggests a coral bleaching event, confirmed by two consecutive observations. The apparent absence of a bleaching in April and May 2016 is consistent with survey data from this area during the 2016 GBR bleaching event. (from ESA)


Coral Bleaching GIS and Satellite Data

Geolocated underwater photos of corals before and after the coral reef bleaching event observed on Ellison Reef in the central Great Barrier Reef, by Sentinel-2 in February 2017. Arrows indicate the area of predominantly bleached coral (from ESA)


This imagery was taken by the SENTINEL-2 satellite  – shown below

Sentinel 2- ESA

Sentinel 2- ESA