Monthly Archives: October 2014

Battle Over There, for Great Barrier Reef

Will Great Barrier Reef lose is greatness? (ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies/Marine Photobank").

Will Great Barrier Reef lose is greatness? (ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies/Marine Photobank”).

The battle for the Great Barrier Reef is on. Its equivalent to the invasion at Normandy is the coal port at Abbot Point, and the most unlikely battalions are U.S. Banks. They are refusing to fund the port’s expansion, as reported this week. But otherwise, the war is being lost.

A coal company from India, Adani, is leading the attack on the Great Barrier Reef by creating one of the world’s largest ports for exporting coal, mainly to China, and scientists call it the greatest threat. That claim remains to be seen, as the reef faces many threats from many sources.

Several defenders of the GBR have been wounded in battle and “honorably discharged.” To use the American term, they were “laid off” from official duties, and in the Australian term they chose “voluntary redundancy” or severance. No matter what you call it, it appears that the most experienced leadership is MIA, missing in action.

What is going to happen? Will Australia continue to slide into disregard for its greatest natural treasure, or will it recognize the enemy within? Will the desire for energy today trump the need for a healthy ocean tomorrow? Stay tuned, because the battle for the Great Barrier Reef is turning into a very salty bloodbath.