The Great Barrier Reef receives an A $ 500 million ($ 379 million) recovery from Australia in the fight to save the world's largest living structure in the face of growing challenges such as climate change, agricultural runoff and coral-eating starfish.
"Like reefs around the world, the Great Barrier Reef is under pressure," said Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull in a statement on Sunday, calling the funding the largest granted to the iconic tourist icon. "A big challenge requires a big investment – and this investment gives our reef the best chance."
- Funding Includes: $ 201 Million to Improve Water Quality by Reducing Fertilizer Use and Adapting New Technologies and Land-Use Practices
- $ 1
- 58 Millions of Dollars for Combating Coral-Emitting Barbed Crown
- $ 45 Million for Coastal Administration, Coastal Cleaning Days, and Awareness
- A $ 40 Million to Improve Reef Health Monitoring
The new funding comes after Deloitte Access Economics estimated the reef at A $ 56 billion last year, based on assets supporting tens of thousands of jobs and contributing $ 6.4 billion a year to the economy. This was even before a study published in Nature this month showed that about 30 percent of the reef, which is larger than Japan, died in 2016 during a prolonged sea heat wave.
The battle over the reef has contributed to a debate in Australia over the future of coal, the second largest export hit of the US which has been blamed by scientists for causing greenhouse gases that contributed to man-made climate change to have.
Turnbull angered environmentalists in October by losing plans to achieve renewable energy targets, even as an Indian conglomerate Adani Enterprises Ltd. plans to build one of the world's largest fossil fuel mines in Queensland, which is also home to the Great Barrier Reef The Australian Conservation Foundation said while the government's funding spike was welcomed, "we can only provide a healthy reef Guarantee future generations by stopping the climate change that fuels global warming, and which in turn drives mass coral bleaching and ocean acidification. "