The dangers in labelling the Great Barrier Reef ‘a lost cause’
There are fears that labelling the Great Barrier Reef as ‘in danger’ could impact the tourism industry which helps support its conservation.
Environment Minister Sussan Ley said Australia was blindsided by the World Heritage Committee’s recommendation and will challenge it.
CEO of the Association of Marine Park Tourism Operators, Gareth Phillips, said climate change is a threat to the reef.
But he said there was a danger in leading people to believe it was a “lost cause”.
“I think if they do list it as endangered, it does two major things,” he told Scott Emerson.
“It takes away that value proposition for people to see it, that they don’t realise [that by] being the best managed reef on the planet, participating and visiting it, contributions of your ticket prices go to funding the management, the research, the monitoring, the adaption of our management to look after the Great Barrier Reef.
“By visiting the reef, tourists contribute to its conservation.
“If we give them this impression it’s a lost cause, they are not going to travel and our tourism industry won’t have that ability to showcase this amazing World Heritage Great Barrier Reef.
“We need people to see it for themselves.”
He said it was important not to dilute the message about the importance of the reef’s conservation.
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