dataset : Downscaled climate model projections of coral bleaching conditions (4-km resolution) RCP8.5_downscaled bleaching projections

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Coral Reef Watch

noaa-downscaled-climate-model-projections-coral-bleaching-conditions-4-km-resolution-rcp8_5-downscaled-bleaching-projections

Downscaled climate model projections of coral bleaching conditions (4-km resolution) RCP8.5_downscaled bleaching projections

Bleaching events are expected to become more frequent and more severe in the decades ahead. This site presents climate model projections of the timing of 2x per decade and 10x per decade (i.e. annual) occurrence of severe bleaching conditions (i.e. thermal stress >8 DHWs). Coral communities will start to change when bleaching becomes more frequent than 2x per decade. Corals susceptible to bleaching will be less common and the structural complexity of many coral reefs will decline. These changes will occur more rapidly if/when bleaching events begin to occur annually. The projections for the two bleaching scenarios have been produced for emissions scenarios RCP8.5 and RCP4.5 (4 projections in total). RCP8.5 is a 'no climate policy' scenario that assumes emissions increase unabated. At time of writing in May of 2016, emissions concentrations were greater than what RCP8.5 projected for 2016. RCP4.5 assumes emissions stabilize just after 2100 due to successful implementation of climate policies that reduce emissions.

coralreefwatch.noaa.gov

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