April 20, 2017. Water / Oceans
Covering a mere 1.6% of the oceanic area of the planet, the Coral Triangle contains over 35% of the world’s coral reef habitat and is home to more marine plant and animal species than any other area of similar size on the planet
Cristina G. Mittermeier, Gregory S. Stone, Russell A. Mittermeier, Octavio Aburto-Oropeza, Claudio Campagna, Kent E. Carpenter, Laurence P. Madin, David Obura, Enric Sala, Sebastian Troëng, Peter A. Seligman & Stefan Gutermuth
The Coral Triangle is a tropical maritime area located in the Pacific, in the convergence of Southeast Asia and Oceania. It comprises waters from six countries: Indonesia, Malaysia, Papua New Guinea, Philippines, Solomon Islands and Timor-Leste, and is the place with the greatest marine biodiversity in the world.
The Coral Triangle provides feeding, breeding, and calving grounds for an outstanding diversity of dolphins and whales, including blue whales and sperm whales. It is the setting for much of the action in Herman Melville’s epic tale, Moby-Dick, and Yankee whalers targeted the large sperm whale populations of the area throughout the 1800s.
Whatever the reason for its peerless marine biodiversity, no one can argue the tremendous importance of the ecosystem services provided by the Coral Triangle. The coral reefs of the region in particular are the basis for a rapidly expanding industry in marine tourism, which plays an increasingly important role in the economies of the six Coral Triangle countries.
This is an excerpt from the CEMEX Conservation Series Book OCEANS: HEART OF OUR BLUE PLANET (2011)