A major port project has been ruled out in Cairns, Australia by the Queensland government over fears that the development could be harmful to the Great Barrier Reef – something that would also jeopardise Australia’s commitment to UNESCO to limit any damages inflicted onto the Reef, according to The Guardian.
A parliamentary committee had plans to make Cairns a ‘priority port’, however, Australia’s Minister for State Development does not want to see the Great Barrier Reef on the world’s ‘in danger’ list.
Anthony Lynham, Minister for State Development for the Queensland government, said: “I appreciate the committee’s consideration of the [sustainable ports development bill] and their report will be considered in full and in detail. However, the government will not divert from elements of the bill which form part of our Reef 2050 plan.
“The Queensland and Australian governments committed to Unesco for only four priority regional ports, and that commitment must stand.”
The Australian government banned dumping along the Great Barrier Reef in March, 2015 in a bid to not only protect the environment, but to end a habit that had been taking place for a century.