OPINION. Sue Arnold
The warning just issued by UNESCO to the Federal government that the World Heritage Great Barrier Reef is likely to be downgraded to a World Heritage in Danger comes as no surprise. Nor should the pathetic response by PM Gillard and the Queensland government.
This is the true legacy of the Gillard government. An utter disaster for Australia‘s environment. This woman hasn’t got an environmental bone in her body. She has studiously ignored the environment allowing the heritage of this ancient land to be raped and plundered in the name of the economy.
Future generations of Australians may well be better educated but without a healthy environment they will have massive problems. Not only will the joys of seeing wildlife in the terrestial and marine environment be lost, there is no way to recreate the Great Barrier Reef. All the beauty, the uniqueness and the wonder will be lost.
The carbon emissions from the massive LNG developments in Gladstone and the emissions to come with the planned ports and future development will make a mockery of any attempt by Australia to claim this country is meeting its greenhouse targets.
Downgrading the Reef is a national tragedy. The loss of listed species such as the dugong, the turtles, in shore dolphins and so many other creatures is a crime against nature. 60% of the dredging in Gladstone has been carried out. Yet the terms of reference of the Ecosystem Research Monitoring Program are still not settled.
No federal government audit of environmental compliance by the Gladstone Ports Corporation has been undertaken. Tony Burke and the Queensland government have allowed the LNG corporations a free for all and we will all pay the price.
The LNG development is claimed to be worth $60 billion. But there’s no cost benefit analysis of the loss of World Heritage status of the Great Barrier Reef.
The reef is the heritage of all humanity. Ms Gillard should hang her head in shame.