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Minister Hunt’s sneaky attempt to co-opt Sir David’s Reef documentary to downplay impacts is offensive

Media Release
Larissa Waters 7 Apr 2016

Environment Minister Hunt's attempt to use Sir David Attenborough's documentary to downplay threats to the Great Barrier Reef, including those inflicted by the government, is disingenuous.

Australian Greens Deputy Leader and climate change spokesperson, Qld Senator Larissa Waters, who met Sir David Attenborough at the Paris climate talks where she watched parted of his documentary, said:

"Sir David Attenborough has long warned strongly of the grave impacts of global warming and is a leading supporter of the global transition to renewable energy.

"It's offensive for Minister Hunt to co-opt the renowned naturalist's documentary masterpiece in an attempt to downplay the impacts of global warming on the Reef, which the Minister is actively exacerbating.

"The Great Barrier Reef is unquestionably spectacular but it won't stay that way if Minister Hunt keeps approving new coal mines, cutting renewable energy grants and sticking with Tony Abbott's woeful climate policies.

"The documentary, which deals with the impacts of climate change in an episode the Environment Minister reportedly has not watched, was filmed before the horrific coral bleaching event over recent weeks.

"While scientists strongly expressed their horror at the recent unprecedented bleaching, Minister Hunt tried to downplay the impacts, presumably because the giant coal mine he approved to export through the Reef will only cook it further.

"Ignoring the devastation of coral bleaching won't make it go away.

"To save the Reef and the 67 000 jobs it provides both the state Labor Government and the federal Coalition Government must overturn their approvals of the climate disaster that is the Adani company's Carmichael coal mine.

"Instead of being stuck in the past, we must take advantage of the global transition to job-rich clean energy - the Greens have a plan for at least 90% clean energy by 2030," Senator Waters said.


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