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Abbott Government risks Reef 'In Danger' listing and tries to hide behind greenwash

The Abbott Government’s State Party report to the World Heritage Committee on the Great Barrier Reef, released over the weekend, is shameless spin and raises concerns that Reef Rescue funding will be decreased, say the Australian Greens.  

“The government is using greenwash and spin to try and distract from the Reef dredging, dumping and shipping that it’s letting the big mining companies get away with,” Senator Larissa Waters, Australian Greens environment spokesperson, said.  

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Abbott Government set to fail on Reef report due today

The Abbott Government is due to report to the World Heritage Committee today on its shameful treatment of the Great Barrier Reef, in the third State of Conservation Report since the UN expressed "extreme concern" about the Reef.

"The Abbott Government deserves a fail mark on its Reef homework," Senator Larissa Waters, Australian Greens environment spokesperson, said.

"Just yesterday, 3 million cubic metres of dredge spoil was approved to be dumped in the Reef's World Heritage waters for the Abbot Point coal terminal expansion.

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Great Barrier Reef Authority lets Reef be treated as a dumping ground

The Australian Greens are outraged by reports today that the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority (GBRMPA) has allowed dredge spoil dumping in the Reef for the Abbot Point coal port expansion.

The Greens will move for new laws in the federal Parliament to ban offshore dumping in the Great Barrier Reef to protect this World Heritage icon from being treated like a rubbish tip.

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Minister Hunt’s Gladstone Harbour inquiry appears no more than a political witch hunt

The Australian Greens are concerned that the Abbott Government's Gladstone Harbour inquiry will turn into a political witch hunt, following the terms of reference announcement today.

"The Abbott Government's inquiry seems to focus only on the bund wall and doesn't appear to have investigative powers," Senator Larissa Waters, Australian Greens environment spokesperson, said.

"Rather than a comprehensive, powerful inquiry, it looks like this will be nothing more than a political witch hunt targeted at former state and federal Labor governments.

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Community and Greens stand together against uncovered coal trains in Griffith

The Australian Greens today stood with Griffith locals against uncovered coal trains passing through the electorate.

Greens candidate for Griffith, Geoff Ebbs, said: "The Cleveland line runs right through Griffith and with multiple coal trains passing through every day with uncovered wagons, this is a major issue for locals.

"According to the CSIRO, more Australians die from particle pollution, like coal dust, than from car crashes each year.

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Abbott Government rips up World Heritage nomination for Cape York

The Abbott Government is doing the bidding of the big mining companies and ignoring Indigenous voices by dropping the Cape York World Heritage nomination, as reported on today, say the Australian Greens.

"Traditional owners were close to agreement on the boundaries of the World Heritage Area, but Tony Abbott would rather give his big mining buddies open slather," Senator Larissa Waters, Australian Greens environment spokesperson, said

"Opening up the Cape to big mining will destroy its environmental values, and flies in the face of what many traditional owners want.

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GBRMPA should consider slow coal demand in Abbot Point decision

The Australian Greens call on the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority to reject dredge spoil dumping for the Abbot Point coal port in light of further evidence today from Goldman Sachs that world demand for coal is slowing.

“The Authority is legally allowed to consider the economic viability of the Abbot Point coal terminal expansion in deciding whether dredge sludge should be dumped in the Reef,” Senator Larissa Waters, Australian Greens environment spokesperson, said.

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Need for Gladstone Inquiry shows Abbot Point dumping should be refused

The Australian Greens are calling on the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority (GBRMPA) to refuse offshore sludge dumping at Abbot Point, following today's announcement of an independent commission of inquiry into Gladstone Harbour.

"How can even more Reef dumping be approved, when we're still investigating the destruction caused last time?" Senator Larissa Waters, Australian Greens environment spokesperson, said.

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Gladstone Harbour needs independent inquiry

The Australian Greens will move to establish a Senate Inquiry into the Gladstone Harbour environmental disaster when federal Parliament next sits in February.

“With more revelations about toxic leaks from the bund wall and the impacts of dredging on water quality being exposed, now more than ever, we need an independent inquiry into the Gladstone Harbour environmental disaster,” Senator Larissa Waters, Australian Greens environment spokesperson, said.

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Environmental Defenders Office cuts leave community to fight David and Goliath battles alone

 

The Australian Greens are appalled that the Abbott Government has cut all federal funding for all Environmental Defenders Offices.

 “It’s outrageous that the Abbott Government has slashed all federal funding for EDOs to help community groups protect their land, water and air from destructive mining and developments,” Senator Larissa Waters, the Australian Greens environment spokesperson and former EDO lawyer, said.

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