Collaborative research between the city of Miami Beach and the University of Miami could lead to a unique combination of systems that provide both shoreline protection and coral reef habitat. The Coral Reef Restoration Lab’s wind-wave tank can simulate a Category 5 hurricane showing how well live corals planted on artificial reef structures survive and grow. Combining artificial reefs and stress-tolerant corals could help restore coastal protection and marine habitat provided by healthy natural reefs. Florida’s reefs provide habitat for hundreds of species while supporting the state’s tourism industry and protecting its shorelines from wave energy.

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