Why Reefs


Coral reefs are one of most important ecosystems on the planet. They are a cornerstone of life in the ocean, supporting 25% of all marine species. These incredible ecosystems are also a source of food for hundreds of millions of people; they power coastal economies around the world through tourism, fishing, and recreation; and reefs shelter coastlines from storms and erosion.

Sadly, coral reef health is collapsing around the world. As reefs die, these ecological wonders and the critical benefits they provide for people disappear. The threats posed from this crisis – from wildlife loss, to homes underwater, to climate refugees –
matters to everyone everywhere.

Generate $30 billion annually

Through coastal protection, fisheries, and tourism reefs are economic powerhouses.

Reduce Wave Energy
by 97%

Coral reefs protect coasts against storm surges, waves, and erosion.

Support 25% of All
Marine Life

Coral reefs are one of the most biodiverse ecosystems on earth.

Half of reefs Dead

In just the past few decades, we have
lost 50% of coral reefs in every region
they're found.

Over 90% to Die by 2050

Scientists project that due to climate change and direct human impacts, over 90% of reefs will be dead by 2050.

Caribbean in Dire State

Over 80% of Caribbean corals have perished, with a long history of human impact taking its toll.

Reefs Are At Risk

Global reef degradation threatens both ecosystem and economic health. If a region's reefs are not revived, coastal residents and properties are more exposed to rising seas and stronger storms, fisheries reliant upon reefs as nurseries face collapse, dive and snorkel tourists will spend their money elsewhere, and the prospect of discovering potentially life-saving
medicines is lost.

What's Killing Reefs

The widespread coral mortality our world’s currently experiencing is not natural and is almost entirely caused by human actions. While restoration is a critical strategy to sustain ocean and community health, the best thing to do to protect coral reefs is to stop killing them. At Coral Vita, we actively work with local partners and governments that are implementing progressive conservation policies. Our political and industrial leaders must rapidly implement meaningful solutions to solve the following problems that are the main causes of reef degradation.


During extreme heat events, coral reefs can turn white in a process called “bleaching.” This happens when coral expel the microalgae that gives them color. These symbiotic algae feed the coral and bleaching can result in the rapid death of huge areas of reefs. Together with ocean acidification, climate change threatens to kill the majority of coral reefs.


Fish are an essential part of a coral reef ecosystem. For the corals in particular, herbivorous fish clean corals by eating macroalgae off their surface. When humans reduce fish populations through overfishing, this algae can smother and kill corals. And as more reefs die and less fish exist to control algal growth, algae more quickly takes over space that corals needed to recover from degradation.


Coral reefs are susceptible to direct human impacts like poor development practices and pollution. Oftentimes, reefs close to population centers and agricultural lands are killed by pollution and runoff. They also can be damaged by sedimentation and improperly managed dredging from development projects.

How We're Solving the Problem

Coral Vita works with a range of stakeholders to restore dying reefs. Through our innovative restoration model, we are able to bring reefs back to life by growing climate change resilient corals and planting them into degraded reef sites.

We partner with leading marine institutes to incorporate cutting edge methods so that our restoration projects are as effective as possible. By offering reef restoration as a service to clients that benefit from healthy reefs, we are developing an industry that can support
large-scale restoration.