Environmental Policy News

Recognizing Australia’s Reef Actions

UNESCO has released the latest draft decision on the state of conservation of the Great Barrier Reef.

The decision recognizes the increased action Australia is taking to protect the Reef and that we are delivering on our commitments.

This includes increased action on climate change, sustainable fishing, and water quality.

The draft decision does not mean the Reef is in the clear.

All coral reefs and most World Heritage sites are vulnerable to climate change. It is a global threat that requires global action.

Australia is supporting global efforts and continues to work with UNESCO and the International Union for Conservation of Nature to ensure the protection of all World Heritage properties impacted by climate change.

The draft decision requests Australia to report back to the Committee in 2025 with an update on progress on actions to protect and manage the Reef.

Australia most recently provided a progress report to UNESCO in January 2024.

The draft decision also requests Australia to provide a state of conservation report by February 1, 2026, for consideration at the World Heritage Committee’s 48th session in 2026.

Australia has a long-standing record of regular public reporting on the Reef. This ensures transparency and accountability.

Australia is committed to protecting the iconic Great Barrier Reef and is also committed to supporting global efforts to protect all World Heritage properties from the impact of climate change.

The draft decision will be provided to the World Heritage Committee for consideration at their next meeting.

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