Joint study finds Chinese coral shrinking | Asia Pacific

Joint study finds Chinese coral shrinking

Joint study finds Chinese coral shrinking

Updated 27 December 2012, 22:44 AEDT

It's been a year of vitriol and brinkmanship in the South China Sea - where territorial disputes have soured relations between several Asian nations.

And now they've claimed an unexpected casualty - the region's coral reef.

A new survey has found that coral cover in the South China Sea has fallen over the past 15 years from an average of more than 60 percent to just 20 percent.

The problem's been compounded by the lack of cooperation between the six countries with claims over the Sea's oil-rich islands. Those countries include China, Malaysia, the Philippines and Vietnam.

Presenter: Joanna McCarthy

Speaker: Professor Terry Hughes, co-author of the joint report by Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies and the South China Sea Institute of Oceanology

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