The Coral Reef Breakthrough


Target Calculations​

Spatial target​​

The spatial target of 125,000 km2 was calculated based on the global dataset developed by the World Resource Institute (WRI) estimating a total global coral reef area of 249,713 km2. This dataset has a resolution of 500m is widely used for other global products (e.g., GCRMN, TNC Mapping Ocean Wealth explorer platform).

The choice of securing 50% of the global coral reef area was based on Target 3 of the Kunming-Montreal Global Biodiversity Framework that calls for the effective conservation and management of at least 30% of terrestrial and inland water areas, and of marine and coastal areas. With coral reefs projected to the ecosystem most at risk of collapse in the face of climate change, and an estimate from the UNEP-WCMC that ~60,000 km2 of coral reefs are under protection, experts agreed that this Coral Reef Breakthrough should make the ambitious statement to secure at least 50% of global coral reefs by 2030.

Funding target​​

The funding target was calculated based on “The cost of saving our oceans – estimating the. Funding gap of sustainable development goal 14” study published by Johansen and Vestvik (2020) evaluating the costs of meeting SDG14 at USD 174.5 billion/year (7), and widely used to describe the funding gap in ocean conservation (8). The Coral Reef Breakthrough funding target of USD 12. billion was calculated as 1% of that target for 7 years (2023-2030) on the basis that coral reefs cover ~1% of oceans.

List of references

  1. Costanza, R., de Groot, R., Sutton, P., van der Ploeg,S., Anderson, S.J., Kubiszewski, I., Fraber, S., Turner, R.K. (2014) Changes in the global value of ecosystem services. Global Environment Change, 26(1): 152-158
  2. IPCC. 2022. Climate Change 2022: Impacts, Adaptation and Vulnerability. Contribution of Working Group II to the Sixth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change [H.-O. Pörtner, D.C. Roberts, M. Tignor, E.S. Poloczanska, K. Mintenbeck, A. Alegría, M. Craig, S. Langsdorf, S. Löschke, V. Möller, A. Okem, B. Rama (eds.)]. Cambridge University Press. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, UK and New York, NY, USA, 3056 pp., doi:10.1017/9781009325844.
  3. Souter, D., Planes, S., Wicquart, J., Logan, M., Obura, D., Staub, F. (eds) (2021). Status of coral reefs of the world: 2020 report. Global Coral Reef Monitoring Network (GCRMN) and International Coral Reef Initiative (ICRI). DOI: 10.59387/WOTJ9184
  4. Burke, L., Spalding, M. (2022) Shoreline protection by the world’s coral reefs: mapping the benefits to people, assets, and infrastructure. Marine Policy 146, 105311
  5. Cortés-Useche, C., Hernandez-Delgado, E.A., Calle-Trivino, J., Blasco, R.S., Galvan, V., Arias-Gonzalez, J.E. (2021) Conservation actions and ecological context: optimising coral reef local management in the Dominican Republic
  6. Boström-Einarsson, L., Babcock, R.C., Bayraktarov, E., Ceccarelli, D., Cook, N., Ferse, S.C.A., et al. 2020. Coral restoration–A systematic review of current methods, successes, failures and future directions. PloS one 
  7.  Johansen, D.F., Vestvik, R.A. (2020) The Cost of saving our oceans – estimating the. Funding gap of sustainable development goal 14. Marine Policy 112:103783
  8. Barber, M., Michell, W., von Hirsh, T., Vyas, T. (2021) A drop in the ocean – Closing the gap in ocean climate finance. Deloitte LLP


The International Coral Reef Initiative (ICRI) and the Global Fund for Coral Reefs (GFCR) are co-leading the Coral Reef Breakthrough process with the High-Level Climate Champion Team, with support from Sweden and Monaco

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