Coral Bleaching Is at the Center of a New Research Funded the Zegar Family Foundation
With a brilliance so stunning and species diversity so vast, coral reefs are perhaps the ocean’s most iconic ecosystem. Home to a quarter of all marine life on the planet, they’re also among its most critical. And they’re in trouble.
As climate change pushes ocean temperatures upward, hotter waters have become the leading culprit in coral bleaching — a condition that strips corals of color and nutrients when algae, the main source of their hue and their food, get stressed and flee.
Coral bleaching is at the center of a new research effort at UCSanta Barbara being funded by a gift from the Zegar Family Foundation. With a total donation of $1.04 million, the nonprofit organization founded by Charles (Chuck) Zegar and his wife, Merryl Snow Zegar, is supporting three new UCSB-based projects — the other two are focused on food supply — aimed at finding environmental solutions...