Posted at 03:37 on 26 September, 2012 UTC
The Autralian National University says the global coral reef ecosystem is on a downward spiral and will soon be destroyed.
Roger Bradbury, an ecologist in the ANU College of Asia and the Pacific, says overfishing, ocean acidification and pollution are pushing coral reefs into oblivion.
He says research shows there is no prospect of changing the trajectory of coral reef destruction in less than 20 to 50 years.
Mr Bradbury says funding should now go towards research to deal with the consequences of a destroyed coral reef and the effects on poor tropical countries like Indonesia and the Philippines who depend on coral reefs for food.
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