The second consecutive year of mass coral bleaching on the Great Barrier Reef highlights the wider global problem affecting many of the word’s marine habitats. What do the experts say, and what can ordinary travelers do?

According to the United Nations Environment Programme, the period between 2014 and 2016 saw the longest ever recorded instance of global bleaching, affecting 90 per cent of coral on the Great Barrier Reef.

After an aerial survey of the area between Townsville and Cairns on Australia’s east coast, experts reported severe bleaching in offshore reefs in this particular area, which had escaped bleaching the year before. “Mass bleaching is occurring on the Great Barrier Reef for the second consecutive year,” confirmed Dr David Wachenfeld, director of reef recovery at the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority (GBRMPA).