Photo courtesy Mahina Expeditions, www.mahina.com

Your Boat Cleaning Products Distributors Talk About the Best Way to Avoid Hitting Coral Reefs

Raritan Engineering your boat cleaning products experts would like to share with you this week some great pointers on how to easily navigate around coral reefs.

For the average cruiser, the half-day passages pose a special challenge. The temptation is to leave early and knock out all the miles in daylight, but as the crew races against time, exhaustion can set in and the bad decisions multiply. 

The crew of Tanda Mailaika, a family of six whose 46-foot Leopard catamaran was lost on a reef on the southwest corner of Huahine in French Polynesia last month, learned this lesson the hard way. 

The first error Govatos made was in planning the 80-nautical mile passage between Moorea and the anchorage Huahine. Anticipating the forecast winds of 20 knots from astern for most of the passage, he estimated about 10 hours for the passage, an average speed of 9-10 knots putting their arrival at 4 p.m., with plenty of light to enter Huahine’s reef pass.

Your Boat Cleaning Products Specialists Discuss How Coral Reef Protection Isn’t Difficult

Lessons: Your boat cleaning products professionals talk about how to be extremely conservative when estimating speeds for a passage. It is much better to err on the slow side. You can almost always slow down or even heave-to, but it is much harder or impossible to make up for lost time. Likewise, allow a healthy margin for error in weather forecasts, particular in areas where meteorological data is spotty.

As Gavatos relates, he saw the sounder indicate 85 feet and then decrease intermittently from there. At first, he assumed the sounder was incorrect—that some anomaly was creating a false reading (as had happened before).

Lessons: When navigating coral reefs at night, ¼ mile is cutting it too close. If you absolutely must hug the reef, you’ll want multiple navigation sources to confirm your position—your own senses being among them. Closed cockpits on big cats can take your senses out of action, a potential handicap when navigating near hazards. 

Coral Reefs Could Be Gone in 30 Years

The world’s coral reefs, from the Great Barrier Reef off Australia to the Seychelles off East Africa, are in grave danger of dying out completely by mid-century unless carbon emissions are reduced enough to slow ocean warming, a new UNESCO study says.

And consequences could be severe for millions of people.

The decline of coral reefs has been well documented, reef by reef. But the new study is the first global examination of the vulnerability of the entire planet’s reef systems, and it paints an especially grim picture. 

Mass Bleachings 

By 2100, most reef systems will die, unless carbon emissions are reduced. Many others will be gone even sooner. “Warming is projected to exceed the ability of reefs to survive within one to three decades for the majority of the World Heritage sites containing corals reefs,” the report says. (UN announces new biosphere reserves, while U.S. removes some.)

Reefs, often referred to as the rainforests of the oceans, occupy less than one percent of the ocean floor, but provide habitat for a million species, including a fourth of the world’s fish. They also protect coastlines against erosion from tropical storms and act as a barrier to sea-level rise.

The consequences are already being felt by some people, and will quickly grow more severe, says Eakin’s NOAA colleague and co-author Scott F. Heron. Low-lying islands such as Kiribati, a string of 33 coral atolls in the central Pacific Ocean, already see saltwater inundating freshwater drinking sources. 

“If what the models projected back then has started to come true, even with all of their issues, then we should have good faith in the science of the current projections,” Heron says. “And those projections say if we don’t act there will be many, many serious impacts.”

Time to Act

“When someone needs help, the overwhelming majority of us will stretch ourselves to help out—it’s a human trait. It’s what makes us people,” Heron adds. “That the people most impacted by these changes are not necessarily people we encounter in our day-to-day lives does not remove our responsibility to help them.”

Learn more from Raritan Engineering about finding the best boat cleaning products for you.

via Coral Reefs Could Be Gone in 30 Years

via Navigating Among Coral Islands