Coral Reefs of Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates: Analysis of Management Approaches in Light of International Best Practices and a Changing Climate

Last modified: 
July 21, 2020 - 3:31pm
Type: Journal Article
Year of publication: 2020
Date published: 07/2020
Authors: Haïfa Ben-Romdhane, Rima Jabado, Edwin Grandcourt, Richard Perry, Ayesha Blooshi, Prashanth Marpu, Taha Ouarda, Hosni Ghedira
Journal title: Frontiers in Marine Science
Volume: 7

The coasts and islands that flank Abu Dhabi, the United Arab Emirates (UAE)’s largest emirate, host the country’s most significant coastal and marine habitats including coral reefs. These reefs, although subject to a variety of pressures from urban and industrial encroachment and climate change, exhibit the highest thresholds for coral bleaching and mortality in the world. By reviewing and benchmarking global, regional and local coral reef conservation efforts, this study highlights the ecological importance and economic uniqueness of the UAE corals in light of the changing climate. The analysis provides a set of recommendations for coral reef management that includes an adapted institutional framework bringing together stakeholders, scientists, and managers. These recommendations are provided to guide coral reef conservation efforts regionally and in jurisdictions with comparable environmental challenges.

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