People and ecosystems

Understanding of the links between coral reef ecosystems, the goods and services they provide to people, and the wellbeing of human societies.


Ecosystem dynamics: past, present and future

Examining the multi-scale dynamics of reefs, from population dynamics to macroevolution


Responding to a changing world

Advancing the fundamental understanding of the key processes underpinning reef resilience.

Coral Bleaching

Coral Bleaching

Coral Reef Studies

From 2005 to 2022, the main node of the ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies was headquartered at James Cook University in Townsville, Queensland (Australia)

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Marine Cloud Brightening over coral reefs


Thursday, May 11th 16:00 to 17:00 hrs

Building 19, Room 106, JCU Townsville Campus
Daniel Harrison
Daniel Harrison

Abstract. Unprecedented ocean temperatures caused by global warming are leading to mass bleaching events worldwide. Technological interventions have been hypothesised as a means of potentially mitigating coral bleachings. Increasing cloud reflectivity, by providing additional cloud condensation nuclei (CCN) in the form of nano sized salt crystals derived from evaporated sea water droplets is one such proposal which appears to be relatively environmentally benign. Calculations suggest that considerable cooling of sea surface temperatures could be achieved by operating within the natural range of clouds and CCN. This process termed Marine Cloud Brightening has the potential to be applied regionally over all, or a portion of reef areas, as a means by which to increase the reflectivity of clouds, reduce incoming solar radiation reaching the sea surface, and reduce ocean temperatures during periods of high coral temperature stress. Several different technologies exist in various stages of development for creating the required CCN in a sufficiently narrow nano sized distribution. Here I will describe the marine cloud brightening concept, the current state of technology development, engineering challenges, and how the technology could potentially be applied.

Biography. Daniel is an Oceanographer who somewhat unusually began his career with a degree in Civil Engineering. He quickly realised his passion was under the sea and has spent the last 13 years conducting oceanographic & engineering research in industry, non governmental organisations, and academia, including with the University of Sydney, the Sydney Institute of Marine Science, and as a visiting scholar to the University of Southern California, as well as various not for profits. He has worked on collaborative projects with the Royal Australian Navy, CSIRO, NASA, NOAA, the Inter American Tropical Tuna Commission, Australian Bureau of Meteorology, and many university collaborators. Along the way, he obtained a Masters and Doctorate from the University of Sydney in Biological Oceanography. His research interests include geoengineering, technologies to enhance carbon storage in the ocean, GIS applications in fisheries management, biogeochemistry & modelling of trophic level relationships in pelagic ecosystems, and anthropogenic influences on biochemistry. He is a 2017 Myer Innovation Fellow, and honorary research fellow at the Sydney Institute of Marine Science, and the University of Sydney.


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