Bleach Patrol is a citizen science project about Coral Bleaching. It involves a collaboration between the World Surf League and the Center for Climate and Life at Columbia University, along with the social networking app goFlow. The goal of the project is to monitor coral bleaching events as they occur, in real time, by incorporating reports about bleaching and reef health from citizen scientists around the world. By engaging a worldwide community of people to gather data, we aim to improve our understanding of and response to this growing problem.
Reports can be submitted through our goFlow smartphone App or via this website. Reports will be archived and used for scientific purposes. Every report you can make is valuable– including reports about healthy, unbleached reefs! Any data is useful data. Especially helpful are “longitudinal” reports about the same location at different times. If you can, please revisit spots a few times (or more!) and tell us how the reef changes from day to day, week to week, month to month, etc.
The Bleach Patrol dataset will help us understand the geographic extent and patterns of bleaching. When and where are corals bleaching? When and where are they healthy?
Coral bleaching is a climatologist’s “canary in a coal mine.” Corals respond quickly and sensitively to perturbations in sea surface temperatures, which are partially driven by changes in climate. Incidences of coral bleaching noted by Bleach Patrol surveyors may help us identify shifts in oceanic conditions, and this information can help us, and other climate scientist, understand how our oceans are changing. They can also help guide better management and protection of these wonderful ecosystems.
Contact the Bleach Patrol
Corals and Paleoclimate
Climate and Paleoclimate