Oct 2, 2006

Reef report welcomed by Labor

Reef report welcomed by Labor


2 October 2006

Labor welcomes the Government’s decision to accept the recommendations of the review of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority.

These recommendations ensure the survival of GBRMPA, which will remain based in Townsville.

Warren Entsch, Barnaby Joyce, De-Anne Kelly and Ron Boswell have lost round one of their fight against GBRMPA. The Liberal-National rump group wants GBRMPA abolished to reward the Fishing Party for their support during the 2004 Federal election.

Local tourism operators, environmentalists, some fishing organisations and the Beattie Labor Government deserve credit for preventing this potentially disastrous outcome.

After significant community pressure, wiser heads have prevailed.

A Queensland-based authority providing independent, scientifically-based management is the best way to administer the Reef.

The Howard Government must get serious about protecting the Reef and take stronger action against climate change.

Climate change is an even larger threat to the Great Barrier Reef than the National Party.

Marine scientists state that warmer and more acidic oceans from climate change could “transform the Great Barrier Reef into a bleached maze of dead coral within 20 years”.

If climate change destroys the Great Barrier Reef, an industry employing 200,000 people and generating an estimated $4.3 billion for Queensland will be destroyed.