An offshore drilling site in an area of extensive live-coral bottom off NW Palawan Island, Philippines, was examined 15 months after well completion. Porites lutea growth rates showed that little suppression of head coral growth could be attributed to drilling. Diver observation, however, together with analysis of sampling transect photomosaics, revealed 70-90% reduction in foliose, branching, and plate-like corals in an iron-stained area that extended out from the wellheads in a 115 X 85-m ellipse.-from Authors
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Effects of offshore oil drilling on Philippine reef corals.