Understanding how reefs grow and respond following environmental disturbances can provide us with an early warning system for predicting future reef health. Accretion of the reef framework primarily reflects the combined activities of calcifying organisms and destructive biophysical processes. However, we know very little about how these processes interact following environmental disturbances. Biological reef building process (e.g. calcification, bioerosion, coral recruitment) are being assessed in order to understand how terrestrial runoff and climate change events have influenced the development of modern day reefs. Findings suggest that: 1) in years following hurricanes and bleaching events coral recruitment is limited, and 2) calcification and net reef accretion can occur where environmental conditions approach or exceed perceived thresholds for coral survival.