KAUST Launches World’s Largest Coral Restoration Project in Saudi Arabia

King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST) is proud to announce the launch of the KAUST Coral Restoration Initiative (KCRI), the largest coral restoration project in the world. Located in the Red Sea, the project’s first nursery is now operational, with a second facility in development.

The KCRI nursery, situated on the coast of NEOM in northwest Saudi Arabia, has a production capacity of 40,000 corals annually and will serve as a blueprint for large-scale coral restoration initiatives. The ambitious project aims to deploy 2 million coral fragments, marking a significant step in marine conservation efforts.

Coral reefs are crucial to the health of our oceans, supporting 25% of known marine species despite covering less than 1% of the sea floor. However, rising temperatures and mass bleaching events threaten the very existence of these ecosystems. The KCRI project is a critical response to this crisis, leveraging KAUST’s world-leading research into marine ecosystems to trial innovative restoration methods.

“We are proud to pioneer a pathway to upscale coral restoration efforts to industrial-scale processes,” said Professor Tony Chan, President of KAUST. “Our faculty is working on cutting-edge technologies to bring this vision to fruition, and we are committed to catalyzing positive societal and global outcomes.”

Nadhmi Al-Nasr, CEO of NEOM, added, “This initiative reflects NEOM’s commitment to sustainability and innovation. We are proud to partner with KAUST to revive vital coral reef sites and highlight the importance of preserving these ecosystems for future generations.”

The KCRI project aligns with the Kingdom’s Vision 2030 and its efforts to bolster marine conservation. It also offers educational benefits, further reinforcing its alignment with the broader strategic goals outlined in Vision 2030.

Join us in this groundbreaking effort to protect our oceans and preserve the beauty of coral reefs for generations to come.

For more information, please visit the website here.

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