Tuesday, 25 September, 2018

Australia to Allocate $500Mln to Protect Great Barrier Reef From Climate Change

The package will help develop coral that is more resistant to high temperatures and light stress The package will help develop coral that is more resistant to high temperatures and light stress
Sherry Houston | 30 April, 2018, 12:01

Australia will invest AU$500 million ($379 million) to protect the Great Barrier Reef, a minister said on Sunday.

The funding, which was confirmed in the May budget, came following results of studies that show the consequences of climate change on the world's largest coral reef system.

But in recent years, it has lost almost a third of its coral due to bleaching linked to rising sea temperatures and damage from crown-of-thorns starfish.

"We welcome the investment in the #GBR, particularly funding for science to support reef resilience and adaptation, but the science advises us the #GBR is highly vulnerable to climate change", the academy said a statement on Twitter, using a hashtag to refer to the Great Barrier Reef.

Aerial surveys conducted in April previous year showed more than two-thirds of the coral in the Barrier Reef had experienced "shocking" amounts of bleaching.

Frydenberg said he believed that the reef could overcome its many challenges with help.

"You can have coral or coal".

But she said no amount of money could bring back those northern reefs that were impacted by the 2016 and 2017 mass bleaching event.

Some environmentalists fear, however, that the action doesn't target the real issue at hand: global warming.

But environmentalists said the plan from Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull's government was nowhere near enough.

The Great Barrier Reef, which can be seen from space, covers 348,000sq/km and was world heritage listed in 1981 as the most extensive and spectacular coral reef ecosystem on the planet, according to the UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation) website.

Climate change also affected the creatures that live in the reef system.

Turnbull said part of the money will be used to mitigate the impacts of climate change, but gave no details. The reef has lost a large percentage of its coral in recent decades due to a variety of environmental stresses.

"It's not working, it's not achieving major water quality improvements", he told Reuters by telephone on Sunday. We must address crown-of-thorns starfish outbreaks.

"The more we understand about the reef, the better we can protect it", Frydenberg was quoted as saying by the Australian Broadcasting Corporation.

"These funds represent an unequaled opportunity to create a legacy of hope for future generations".

"I have great optimism that together we will protect this incredible icon and all its brilliant biodiversity". The reef's health and prospects are increasingly grim.

The Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority and The Department of the Environment and Energy will also get an additional funding of $56 million.

The federal government of Australia is allocating half a billion dollars to save the Great Barrier Reef from climate change and other threats.

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