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Red soil problem research urged

Date Posted: 1998-12-25

Coral Reefs around Okinawa Islands have been severely damaged by so-called red soil flows. The name is derived from the color the soil flowing into the ocean from land with rainwater. When getting on a reef, the red soil suffocates and kills the corals on the reef.

On Dec. 16, a research group in Yaeyama announced the results of their research into the condition of the coral reefs around Okinawa. They exclaimed that the coral reefs around Okinawan Islands became white because of combined effects of the warmer ocean temperature and the red soil.

Okinawa Prefecture is also planning to conduct a specific research into the condition of the coral reefs. That research will utilize satellite photos to monitor the flow of the red soil into the ocean. However, the plan has already attracted some controversy. Professor Jun Ui at the Okinawa University commented that the monitoring from the satellite would be useless if the specific research for the source of the red soil is not conducted first.

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