By Katlin Cilliers | Staff Writer

KCC students and visitors gathered on Wednesday for a screening of “Chasing Coral,” a Netflix original that sheds light on the impact of global warming beyond what meets the eye. Hidden in the depths of oceans around the globe, coral bleaching is an ongoing environmental issue. It happens due to an increase in ocean water temperatures, causing coral to expel the algae inside it, turning completely white. The phenomenon has become more frequent since the early 2000s and makes coral susceptible to death.

STEM professors and students organized the event. Carin Tamayo, who has just recently graduated in Biology at the University of Hawai‘i and has gone through KCC’s STEM program herself, was among the helpers.

“When you start to see the grand scope of … things, you just maybe feel a little overwhelmed by it,” she said. “So, you know, awareness that even your one small effort, no matter how small it may be to you, can still have a huge impact.”

Students delivered a brief presentation about global warming, followed by a “Climate Change Bingo” with prizes. (Photo by Katlin Cilliers)

The hour-and-a-half movie showed the efforts of a team of scientists, photographers and divers from diverse backgrounds in a project to document the process of coral bleaching in the waters of Hawaiʻi, the Bahamas, and the Great Barrier Reef in Australia. If nothing is done, the Earth may lose the world’s coral formations as soon as 30 years from now, according to the documentary.

Luana Golden, a visitor from the North Shore, drove across the island to watch the film.

“Definitely, we all need to be a little bit more self-aware,” Golden said. “Don’t be too self-absorbed, you know? We live around a lot of people, so we need to take care of things better.”