Special Issue "Climate Change and Coral Reefs Ecosystems"


A special issue of Journal of Marine Science and Engineering (ISSN 2077-1312).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 March 2015)

Special Issue Editor

Guest Editor
Prof. Loke Ming Chou
Tropical Marine Science Institute, National University of Singapore, S2S 18 Kent Ridge Road, Singapore 119227, Singapore
E-Mail: dbsclm@nus.edu.sg
Interests: coral reef ecology; reef restoration and conservation; coastal biodiversity; integrated coastal management

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Direct human pressure has contributed to widespread degradation of the coral reef ecosystem throughout the tropics. Concern over over-exploitation, physical destruction, pollution and coastal development has in the last two decades expanded to include the vulnerability of coral reefs to the various impacts of climate change. How will reef systems respond to sea level rise, sea surface temperature elevation, extreme weather variables and ocean acidification, and will the response differ between reefs that are already compromised by direct anthropogenic pressure and those that are not? Can the response of reefs to chronic or acute disturbances that simulate climate change impact scenarios provide some indication of resilience? Coral reefs have been affected by two major and extensive sea surface temperature events in 1998 and 2010 with varying impacts in different regions. The effect of lowered pH on coral calcification is gaining interest. Some coral species have shifted to the higher latitudes. Research on how coral reef distribution and community structure will change and how these will affect the livelihoods of coastal populations is important to guide our thinking on protection of the coral reef ecosystem against climate change. Contributions that address the biophysical as well as the socio-economic linkages between coral reefs and climate change are most welcome.

Kindest regards,

Prof. Loke Ming Chou
Guest Editor


Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. Papers will be published continuously (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are refereed through a peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Journal of Marine Science and Engineering is an international peer-reviewed Open Access quarterly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. For the first couple of issues the Article Processing Charge (APC) will be waived for well-prepared manuscripts. English correction and/or formatting fees of 250 CHF (Swiss Francs) will be charged in certain cases for those articles accepted for publication that require extensive additional formatting and/or English corrections.


  • climate change impacts
  • coral reef ecosystem
  • reef response to climate change
  • global warming and coral bleaching
  • ocean acidification and coral calcification
  • reef species range shifts
  • reef community structure change
  • reef resilience/vulnerability to climate change
  • impact of climate-influenced reef change on society
  • climate-induced change to reef ecosystem services

Published Papers (3 papers)

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Displaying article 1-3
p. 299-328
J. Mar. Sci. Eng. 2015, 3(2), 299-328; doi:10.3390/jmse3020299 (registering DOI)
Received: 7 April 2015 / Accepted: 15 May 2015 / Published: 28 May 2015
Show/Hide Abstract | PDF Full-text (868 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Climate Change and Coral Reefs Ecosystems)
p. 216-239
by ,  and
J. Mar. Sci. Eng. 2015, 3(2), 216-239; doi:10.3390/jmse3020216
Received: 11 March 2015 / Accepted: 27 April 2015 / Published: 6 May 2015
Show/Hide Abstract | PDF Full-text (3456 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Climate Change and Coral Reefs Ecosystems)
p. 111-127
J. Mar. Sci. Eng. 2015, 3(1), 111-127; doi:10.3390/jmse3010111
Received: 22 January 2015 / Accepted: 25 February 2015 / Published: 4 March 2015
Show/Hide Abstract | PDF Full-text (6759 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Climate Change and Coral Reefs Ecosystems)
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Planned Papers

The below list represents only planned manuscripts. Some of these manuscripts have not been received by the Editorial Office yet. Papers submitted to MDPI journals are subject to peer-review.

Title: Through bleaching and tsunami: coral reef recovery in the Maldives
Carla Morri 1, Monica Montefalcone 1, Roberta Lasagna 1, Giulia Gatti 1,2, Alessio Rovere 3, Giuseppe Baldelli 4, Paolo Colantoni 4, Carlo Nike Bianchi 1,*
1 DiSTAV (Department of Earth, Environment and Life Sciences), University of Genoa, Corso Europa 26, 16132 Genoa, Italy
Station Marine d'Endoume, Rue de la Batterie des Lions, 13007 Marseille, France
MARUM, Centre for Marine Environmental Sciences, University of Bremen, & ZMT, Leibniz Centre for Tropical Marine Ecology, Leobener Str. 20, 28359 Bremen, Germany
DiSTeVA (Department of Earth, Life and Environment Sciences), University of Urbino, loc. Crocicchia, 61029 Urbino, Italy
* Corresponding author: nbianchi@dipteris.unige.it
Climate change is causing coral reef degradation worldwide. Estimating magnitude, pattern and trajectories of change requires information on previous conditions of coral reef communities, but unfortunately this kind of historical data are rare for most regions of the world ocean. Since 1989 we have been studying geological and ecological aspects of coral reefs in the Maldives. We have collected data on the state of coral reefs before, during and after the bleaching event of 1998, which caused widespread coral mortality. On comparison, the tsunami of 26th December 2004 had a modest impact on the reefs. The resilience of Maldivian coral reefs after the mass-mortality of 1998 may be estimated between 4 and 15+ years, or may even be considered unachieved, as there are species that have not come back yet. Long term monitoring remains the only means to track their future evolution.

Last update: 23 January 2015

J. Mar. Sci. Eng. EISSN 2077-1312 Published by MDPI AG, Basel, Switzerland RSS E-Mail Table of Contents Alert