Australia puts hundreds of millions into protecting the Great Barrier Reef | abroad
This investment follows several multi-billion dollar investments Australia has made in the Great Barrier Reef in recent years. “We support the health of coral reefs while supporting the economic future of Queensland tourists, hospitality businesses and local communities,” Governor Morrison said in a statement. He has done little to tackle climate change in recent years and is an advocate of the use of fossil fuels and controversial coal mining.
Last year, Australia narrowly prevented the massive coral reef from being placed on UNESCO’s list of endangered World Heritage Sites. The United Nations considered this because it believes Australia has done little to improve water quality and meet climate goals to protect coral. Placing the endangered World Heritage List will have consequences for the local economy. Before the pandemic, the Great Barrier Reef attracted many tourists each year and provided thousands of jobs. Australia fears tourists will stay away if coral reefs are put on the list.
Through intense pressure, the Australian government was able to prevent the reefs being classified as a “World Heritage in Danger”. UNESCO will assess this again next year.
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