UNESCO's Great Barrier Reef Alert Signals Govt Inaction

Climate Council

UNESCO'S WARNING IS A "RED FLAG" on government inaction, says the Climate Council.

On Tuesday, UNESCO warned Australia to urgently ramp up its climate change targets to save the Great Barrier Reef from imminent danger.

Climate Council CEO Amanda McKenzie said: "Let's be clear, this announcement is a red flag and Federal Environment Minister Tanya Plibersek claiming a win from this warning is misleading.

"The Great Barrier Reef has bleached five times in the past nine years and suffered through its worst-ever heat stress earlier this year when more than 80% of reefs in the system endured dangerous levels of unnatural heating.

"Every new coal and gas project adds harmful climate pollution into the atmosphere and further endangers the Reef. The Government must build upon their clean energy plans by also planning to phase out fossil fuels."

Climate Councillor, former IPCC author and biologist, Professor Lesley Hughes, said: "The impact of climate pollution is driving our beloved Reef to the brink, and unless we act faster many other natural and human systems will tumble. The implications of these changes are unimaginable.

"Australians love and treasure our oceans and the Great Barrier Reef. We understand its irreplaceable value and want to protect it for future generations to experience its wonder and beauty.

"Our government has claimed commitment to protecting the reef, yet continues to approve projects that harm it. This inconsistency is not just disappointing; it's destructive. Reforming our national environmental law to effectively combat climate pollution is an essential step. We must say 'yes' to projects that safeguard the reef and 'no' to those that endanger it."

Amanda McKenzie also highlighted the dangers nuclear posed for the wellbeing of the Great Barrier Reef: "The Coalition's energy scheme would increase climate pollution, further jeopardising the Reef's future by keeping us reliant on coal and gas for far too long. Clean energy solutions like solar and wind are ready to be scaled up now. We must harness them to slash climate pollution and protect the Great Barrier Reef."

About us:

The Climate Council is Australia's leading community-funded climate change communications organisation. We provide authoritative, expert and evidence-based advice on climate change to journalists, policymakers, and the wider Australian community.

/Public Release. This material from the originating organization/author(s) might be of the point-in-time nature, and edited for clarity, style and length. Mirage.News does not take institutional positions or sides, and all views, positions, and conclusions expressed herein are solely those of the author(s).