Red Sea corals close to extinction

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Corals in the Red Sea are being threatened with extinction, according to a story from Planet Ark.

Professor Yossi Loya, a coral ecologist, told Planet Ark that the intensive farming of fish in cages around Eilat is causing severe damage to the reefs.

"It was one of the most beautiful reefs in the world and believe me I've seen them all. It was a pearl and it's really very painful to see it dying.

"We are in the 11th hour, the very last moment to save them," says Prof Loya.

Planet Ark claims that as many as five million fish are produced in Eilat and that some of the farms are operating without a permit.

Loya says that the pollution from the farms is changing the nitrate-free oligotrophic nature of the Red Sea and causing eutrophication, which brings pollutants and algae to the area to the detriment of other forms of reef life.