There are many concerns regarding human-caused threats to coral reefs. Overfishing practices, tourism, improper diving management, and selling marine animals as part of the global aquarium trade are known as the main human caused threats to speak of. Although seemingly not as severe as the threat of bleaching or having water levels rise in a short amount of time, human threats have literally decimated coral populations in some preciously prosperous areas.
When it comes to learning about human-caused threats to coral reefs, it is essential to find out as much as possible about the most problematic and damaging practices out there in order to inform others and take steps to prevent them. Coral reefs are already severely threatened by the prospect of mass bleaching and heightened water temperatures, and the added problem of human caused threats only makes things worse. When as many people as possible are educated about these threats, it can help get the information to people, non-profits and wealthy businesses that can and are willing to make a difference. Also, knowing about these practices can lead you to research the various retail outlets and travel agencies you use more carefully, so you can avoid being part of the problem by supporting the demand for practices that harm coral reefs.
Countries in southeast Asia, Africa and the Middle East, as well as some in the western world, are responsible for the development of tourist attractions and the use of damaging practices that can harm coral reefs severely. If you travel to some poorly managed coastal areas on vacation, you may find that the organizers rarely clean the beach or organize coral reef cleanup activities. Moreover, in the interest of profit, they may invite or allow divers to engage in coral reef diving without proper information or precautions. As a result, and because of the presence of millions of tourists on a yearly basis, direct physical interaction often becomes one of the most problematic human caused threats to coral reefs.
Estimates show that at least 2 million people worldwide are currently in possession of rare marine creatures. The harvesting of marine life for the purpose of selling it as part of the global aquarium trade is a major human threat that continues to affect coral populations. The problems involved range from overharvesting to the use of cyanide for the purpose of harvesting rare or even endangered species and selling them on the black market. Insensitive shipping and bad husbandry practices also lead to the loss of many corals and marine species kept in captivity for this purpose. These issues show that the global aquarium trade is one of the growing human caused threats to coral reefs.