Stop Treating the Great Barrier Reef as a Dump

  • by: Judith B.
  • recipient: The Hon Tony Burke MP, Minister for Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities, Australia

The Great Barrier Reef is one of the most beautiful landmarks on Earth and unique, being the world’s largest living structure. It forms the home of a great variety of mammals, fish, turtles and invertebrates, supports thousands of jobs and brings pleasure to millions of locals and tourists every year.

For reasons best known to itself, the Australian government has decided that one of the country's top tourist attractions also makes a handy garbage dump, allowing an unprecedented stream of industrial developments to go ahead in the area.

UNESCO has given Australia 6 months to stop barely controlled dumping, dredging and shipping in and around the Great Barrier Reef before the World Heritage Site is declared as being in critical danger.

Tell the Australian government to get its act together and stop destroying this amazing natural resource for the sake of short term profit.

We the undersigned ask that you take immediate steps to protect the Great Barrier Reef from the irrevocable damage caused by offshore dumping, dredging and uncontrolled shipping in the region.

The reef is one of this country’s most valuable natural resources, which it is your job as Environment Minister to protect, not allow to be used as a convenient dumping ground or be wrecked by dredging.

The Great Barrier Reef is of enormous ecological importance. It also brings in about $5 billion in tourist money every year, which it could continue to do indefinitely, provided that it is not destroyed in the meantime for the sake of short-term vested interests such as the coal industry.

We ask that no new industrial developments in the area be approved until the reef has been assessed properly by independent experts. We also ask that you put an immediate end to dredging and dumping in the reef and surrounding area.

Thank you for your attention.

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