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Labor supports Greens reef dumping ban

Larissa Waters 26 Jun 2013

A Greens motion to stop sediment dumping in the Great Barrier Reef has passed the Senate today.

“With two days of sitting left, Labor has belatedly decided that allowing the big mining companies to dump sediment in the Great Barrier Reef is a bad idea,” Senator Larissa Waters, Australian Greens environment spokesperson, said.

“This sudden enlightenment comes after Labor has approved the dumping of at least 17.5 million cubic metres of sediment in the Great Barrier Reef.

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Prohibiting offshore dumping of dredge spoil within the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area: Senate Motion June 2013

The Senate notes:

1. The Government estimates that the Reef Rescue program has stopped the equivalent of over one million wheelbarrows worth of sediment run-off entering the Great Barrier Reef.

2. At least 193 times that amount of sediment has been approved by this Government for offshore dumping in the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area.

3. Scientific understanding is that added sediment in the marine environment has destructive impacts on seagrasses and corals.

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World Heritage Committee Steps Up Great Barrier Reef Warning

Larissa Waters 18 Jun 2013

The World Heritage Committee has today strengthened its warning that the Great Barrier Reef could be added to the World Heritage list of sites in danger at its meeting in Cambodia. 

“The World Heritage Committee has stepped up its warning, expressing concern over ongoing coastal development and giving the government one last chance – one more year – to act on the committee’s strong recommendations to protect the reef from being added to the World Heritage list of sites in danger,” Senator Larissa Waters, Australian Greens environment spokesperson, said.

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Great Barrier Reef motion June 2013

Larissa Waters 17 Jun 2013

Senator Waters:

To move - that the Senate -

(a) notes:

(i) the World Heritage Committee's draft decision on the Great Barrier Reef states that to avoid the reef being added to the World Heritage in Danger list, Australia must turn around the ‘limited progress' to date, and take ‘urgent and decisive' action on its earlier recommendations to prevent new ports in pristine areas, and reject damaging port expansions,

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Hold Reef Port Development Says Greens Initiated Senate Inquiry

A Senate inquiry into the Greens' bill to save the Great Barrier Reef today recommended no new ports in pristine areas of the reef until a strategic assessment of the reef is completed, but the recommendation comes too late to be acted upon in this Parliament.

"Through this Greens initiated inquiry, we've finally seen some government reaction to the UN's warning that the reef could be listed as a World Heritage site in danger but it's too little, too late," said Senator Larissa Waters, Australian Greens environment spokesperson.

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Newman’s track record on Reef won’t impress UNESCO

The Newman Government must improve on its shameful track record of Great Barrier Reef destruction if it wants to be taken seriously in direct talks with UNESCO, which the deputy premier announced he would pursue today.

“Since UNESCO gave its initial warning that the reef could be added to the World Heritage list of sites in danger more than a year ago, the Newman and Gillard governments have continued to push mega industrial ports on the reef coast,” Senator Larissa Waters, Australian Greens environment spokesperson, said.

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Greens to Stop Reef From Being Used as a Mining Dumping Ground

Christine Milne 3 Jun 2013

The Australian Greens announced a new policy in Brisbane today to stop offshore dumping of dredge spoil in the Great Barrier Reef, being dug up at record rates for new coal and gas ports.

"It's time Julia Gillard and Tony Abbott started treating the Great Barrier Reef as a natural wonder of the world and not as a dumping ground for the big mining companies," Australian Greens Leader Senator Christine Milne said. 

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