Shallow-water corals, which harbour 30 percent of marine life, are forecast to disappear almost entirely under these conditions.More

Climate change is set to empty the ocean of nearly a fifth of all living creatures, measured by mass, by the end of the century, researchers have calculated.

In a world that heats up three to four degrees Celsius compared to pre-industrial levels, 17 percent of marine biomass — from minuscule plankton to 100-tonne whales — will be wiped out, they reported in the US Proceedings of the National Academy of Science.

To date, Earth’s surface has warmed a full degree (1.8 degrees Fahrenheit).

Bigger fish and marine mammals already devastated by overfishing, pollution and ship strikes will see especially sharp declines due to rising temperatures.

Even in a “best-case” scenario

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