Media Statement: 17 September 2019
The Australian Marine Conservation Society today condemned the passage of a motion in the Australian Senate to establish a Committee inquiry into the science of farming impacts on water pollution of the Great Barrier Reef.
The motion was proposed by the government and supported by the Centre Alliance and Pauline Hanson’s One Nation. It was opposed by Labor, the Greens and Senator Jacqui Lambie.
The science is long settled on the threats to the Great Barrier Reef from water quality and climate change. Recently the federal and Queensland government released a Report Card on Reef water quality which gave the inshore Reef a ‘D’ score for overall condition.
The federal government’s Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority downgraded the outlook for our most famous natural asset to ‘very poor’. Yet just a few days later, the government establishes an inquiry into the science behind these detailed and multi-year assessments.
Cutting farm pollution and cleaning up our Reef’s water is essential to give our Reef and its extraordinary wildlife a fighting chance to survive climate change.
Australia has pledged to the World Heritage Committee that it would take steps to clean up the Reef’s water. When the Committee meets again in 2020 to review Australia’s performance in protecting our Reef, it will be looking at what action has been taken.