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Qld Budget 2017: $175 million boost for Great Barrier Reef

The United Nations Agency UNESCO said in a draft report to the World Heritage Committee released on Saturday that
The United Nations Agency UNESCO said in a draft report to the World Heritage Committee released on Saturday that "climate change remains the most significant overall threat to the future" of the coral expanse. AP Photo - Brain Cassey

THE Great Barrier Reef's life raft from the Queensland Budget has come in the form of $175 million funding boost, which will be rolled out in $35 million yearly instalments over the next five years.

Treasurer Curtis Pitt told parliament the reef was under pressure from "agricultural run-off, climate change, coastal development and illegal fishing".

"Cyclones and severe flooding have also impacted the reef," he said.

Environment Minister Steven Miles said the funding would help the state achieve its water quality targets.

More than $1million funding over three years from 2018-19 will support the operation of an additional vessel for the Great Barrier Reef Joint Field Management Program.

"Following the success of the reef ranger, an additional long-range high-speed patrol vessel will help protect the reef against illegal activities and tackle crown-of-thorns starfish," he said.

"Supporting the operation of another vessel means we can increase the presence of rangers out on the water.

"It will help further strengthen the day-to-day management of the Great Barrier Reef with increased compliance capabilities, protect and maintain marine and island ecosystems and support the servicing of essential tourism infrastructure across the reef."

Topics:  curtis pitt great barrier reef queensland budget 2017 steven miles


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