View first underwater images of Amazon Reef

A recently discovered coral reef system off the Brazilian coast has been photographed. 

Recifes da foz do rio Amazonas.

Crédito obrigatório: Divulgação/Greenpeace

A coral reef found in 2014 has been captured on camera for the first time. 

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The 9,300km2 reef stretches for almost 1,000km in muddy waters where the Amazon River meets the Atlantic Ocean.

The find surprised scientists and the Brazilian government as most corals exist in clear and sunlit waters, and the outflow from great rivers usually creates major gaps in reef systems.

“This reef system is important for many reasons,” said Nils Asp, a researcher at the Federal University of Pará.

“It has a huge potential for new species, and it is also important for the economic well-being of fishing communities.” 

Recifes da foz do rio Amazonas.

Crédito obrigatório: Divulgação/Greenpeace

Amazon Reef © Greenpeace

The area had already been opened up for oil exploration by the Brazilian government, and a number of oil companies are thought to be interested in drilling for oil there.

Recifes da foz do rio Amazonas.

Crédito obrigatório: Divulgação/Greenpeace

Amazon Reef © Greenpeace

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