The Great Barrier Reef is one of the marvels of nature, but it seems that unless we do something about it, we might one day be saying that the Great Barrier Reef was one of the marvels of nature. However thankfully scientists in Australia might have come up with a way to protect what’s left of it.

This is by creating a calcium “sun shield” that helps protect the reef from the effects of coral bleaching. For those unfamiliar, coral bleaching happens when the water is too warm resulting in the corals expelling algae living in their tissues. These algaes are what gives the coral their unique and vibrant colors.

With the creation of this “sun shield”, it will basically sit on top of the water where it will float and help protect the corals from the effects. This film is said to be biodegradable and 50,000 times thinner than a human hair and is capable of decreasing sunlight by as much as 30%. In their tests, scientists have found that this shield has decreased the bleaching that takes place.

However given that the reef measures 216,000 square miles, creating a shield that’s big enough to cover all of it would be almost impossible, but but managing director of the Great Barrier Reef Foundation, Anna Marsden said that it could be used for high-value or high-risk areas.

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