"Half the Great Barrier Reef is dead," according to the Facebook event page for the Australian climate strike. It described how the country was “in the thick of the climate crisis,” and referred to prolonged drought, catastrophic bushfires, severe cyclones and heatwaves.
The Great Barrier Reef suffered two recent incidences of mass bleaching, in 2016 and 2017, which killed about half of the corals on the Great Barrier Reef, along with many others around the world.
John "Charlie" Veron -- widely known as "The Godfather of Coral" -- is a renowned reef expert who personally discovered nearly a quarter of the world's coral species and has spent the past 45 years diving Australia's Great Barrier Reef.
He told CNN last year the mass bleaching events were a wake-up call for the world in the wider battle against climate change. "It's more than an alarm bell," says Veron. "It's an air raid siren."
Check out CNN’s special report on the dire warnings about the future health of one of Australia’s most treasured natural wonders.