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News Source: edition.cnn.com
Growing Coral On Land To Save Our Reefs
land reefs farm

Growing Coral On Land To Save Our Reefs

(CNN) The battle to save our most diverse ecosystems is entering a critical phase.

Replay More Videos ... MUST WATCH The race to save the Great Barrier Reef 03:49 Underwater desert In an effort to prevent this alarming prospect, two US environmental entrepreneurs have taken a stand, opening the world's first commercial land-based coral farm in the Caribbean.

Gator Halpern and Sam Teicher founded start-up Coral Vita with the aim of reviving reefs worldwide. Global reef restoration Coral Vita uses a technique called micro-fragmentation which involves removing coral fragments from the ocean and breaking them into tiny pieces. This stimulates tissue growth and allows fragments to grow into clones at up to 50 times the normal rate in land-based nurseries, before they are planted back into the ocean. According to Teicher and Halpern, this new method enables them to scale up previous restoration efforts, which have so far focused on reviving coral colonies underwater. Teicher said traditional coral farming was too slow and restrictive as it only allowed for the restoration of fast-growing reefs. "Underwater coral nurseries struggle to scale to counter global degradation and are jeopardized by events like storms, fishing accidents, and bleaching events," he added.