Taking action today to save the world’s corals for tomorrow.
Great Barrier Reef Legacy
is working with Traditional Owners, industry and corporate partners, research collaborators, government organisations and tourism operators, to establish the world's first Living Coral Biobank. It will preserve the genetic biodiversity of hard coral species by collecting and maintaining living samples of some 800 species. The techniques and equipment to carry this out are well established and take advantage of corals’ natural ability to survive indefinitely under the correct conditions. Most importantly this project is achievable now.
The Living Coral Biobank forms part of an international response to preserve coral biodiversity and GBR Legacy is part of a global initiative working together for the long-term survival of the world’s corals. The Biobank is already recognised as a key method available now to save the biodiversity of corals by an international collaboration of researchers - the Global Restoration and Preservation Consortium.
The Living Coral Biobank complements existing practical efforts to reduce greenhouse gases and reduce regional pressures on coral reefs from land-based and water-based activities. It complements and value-adds to global research and restoration efforts, including activities to rehabilitate habitats and help corals to adapt to the impacts of a changing climate.
Critically, it recognises that the positive effects of work to reduce pressures on coral reefs will take time – from years at best, to decades. And every year we risk losing more species. Once they are gone, they are gone forever. The Living Coral Biobank will be a source of live coral fragments, tissue samples and genetic material for research, restoration and recovery efforts vital to securing the future of coral reefs and the environmental, economic, social, and cultural benefits they provide.
The Living Coral Biobank will act as an insurance policy for coral biodiversity until such time as the conditions for their survival in the natural system improves.
The time to act is now