The story so far...

Delineating the actions and decisions threatening the Great Barrier Reef.

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  1. The Great Barrier Reef is a treasure worth fighting for. Whether you have experienced its magnificent beauty that lies beneath the surface, been captivated by images of the weird and wonderful marine life that inhabit its waters and beaches or are simply an Aussie that is proud of such a precious resource marvelled at from every corner of the world, you, unlike the Australian government, do not need to be told this twice.
  2. Since 2010, the Australian government has been presented with the hard facts: surveys uncovering the danger to water bird populations; reports exposing the immense scale of proposed coal terminals on the Reef; research revealing the global impact of increased coal exports from Australia; and the results of climate change unfolding before our eyes as Australia experiences a year of extreme and unprecedented weather.
  3. They have not listened.
  4. In 2012, the UN's World Heritage Committee requested that the Australian Government not permit any new port developments that would impact on the outstanding universal value of the Great Barrier Reef.
  5. They did not listen, and will be asked soon to approve more.
  6. The current battle to save the Reef has been heating up for three years. And, if you look back through the timeline below, it is clear that this is no time for complacency. If they are not listening, we must speak louder. If we do not speak louder, the insatiable greed of the coal industry will inevitably destroy this magnificent and unique world heritage site.
  7. 2010

  8. 13 October: 

    Tony Burke noted that the World Heritage Committee may consider placing the GBR on the “World Heritage in Danger” list due to developments of LNG (Liquid Natural Gas) plants on Curtis Island[i]


    Tony Burke tells Julia Gillard that the cumulative impacts of developments in the reef make projects approvals more difficult if “World Heritage and other environmental values are to be protected”[ii]

    [i]  Brief Number B10/2033 released under FOI

    [ii] Document released under FOI

  9. 22 October: 

    Gladstone Liquefied Natural Gas LNG Park (Santos) proposal approved. Port of Gladstone Western Basin Strategic Dredging and Disposal Project approved. Queensland Curtis LNG Project: LNG Plant and Associated Onshore Facilities approved

  10. 2011

  11. 21 February:  
    Australia Pacific LNG Plant Approved.

  12. June: 
    UNSECO World Heritage Committee Express extreme concern about LNG developments on Curtis Island and urges Australia to undertake a comprehensive strategic assessment of the entire World Heritage Area
  13. Sept-Dec:
    Fitzroy Terminal Project, Wongai Project, BHPB Terminal 2 and Adani’s Terminal 0 allowed to proceed into the EPBC Act (Environment Protection Biodiversity Conservation Act) approval process 

  14. 2012

  15. Jan-Feb:
    Capital Dredging at Abbot Point and the Dudgeon Point coal terminals proceed into the EPBC Act approval process.

  16. February:
    Queensland and the Commonwealth Government Departments sign agreement to undertake a Strategic Assessment of the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area and adjacent coastal zone

  17. February:  
    Greenpeace releases Boom goes the Reef – revealing the scale of coal development proposed for the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage coastline. 

  18. 13 February:
    Waratah Coal, Abbot Point Coal Terminal Project allowed to proceed into the EPBC Act approval process.

  19. February:
    Major surveys for water birds undertaken in the Caley Valley Wetlands for Abbot Point Cumulative Impact Assessment 

  20. 5-14 March:
    UNESCO Monitoring mission visits Australia. On 7 March, Greenpeace paints “Reef in danger” on a coal ship in Gladstone while the Mission is in the area.