Coral - Rekindling Venus by Australian filmmaker Lynette Wallworth, released at the Nehru Planetarium here on Wednesday, throws light on the coral ecosystem and its role in combating global warming.

The film was released in full dome planetariums worldwide, including Mumbai, to mark the Transit of Venus and World Environment Day. It depicts the life cycle of a coral through vivid footage of fluorescent coral reefs as well as bioluminiscent sea creatures and other rare marine life most threatened by climate change due to warming sea temperatures.

Coral reefs, the most diverse marine habitat that support half-a-million species, may start losing dominance from Indian seas starting 2030 following increase in sea temperature, says a new study.

By Christopher Pala

Off the palm-fringed white beach of Butaitari, Kiribati, the view underwater is downright scary. Corals are being covered and smothered to death by a bushy seaweed that is so tough even algae-grazing fish avoid it. It settles in the reef's crevices that fish once called home, driving them away.

Dead coral stops supporting the ecosystem and, within a couple of decades, will crumble into rubble, allowing big ocean waves to reach the beach during storms and destroy the flimsy thatched huts of the Micronesians.