Coral reefs support about a quarter of earth’s marine life despite occupying just one per cent of the ocean floor. They are among the most bio-diverse ecosystems on the planet. However, pollution, global warming and sedimentation greatly threaten this incredible habitat – and up to a third of coral reefs could be lost within 30 years. Adding to this, rising water acidity not only inhibits calcification – the process through which reefs form – but also begins to dissolve the coral’s skeleton.
Coral3, by Nell Bennett, MA Innovation Design Engineering, is a sacrificial, alkaline structure placed among coral that dissolves with the currents and water acidity, bathing the reef in alkaline water and providing a healthier pH balance. Deposited by divers, it offers a unique and fantastical dive experience with an educational and conservation element. In this way, it can offer a possible source of income for local communities.