GREAT BARRIER REEF TO BE LISTED AS "IN DANGER" FEBRUARY 1
Australia must take swift action to protect the Great Barrier Reef, according to environmental groups. UNESCO issued a warning last June over development on the reef, and the United Nations said that the reef will be listed as "in danger" if there is no progress by February 1. The reef is worth approximately $6.26 billion in tourism to the economy annually. "Australia's most important environmental asset is under serious threat from existing and proposed industrialization along the Queensland coast," said Felicity Wishart, campaign director for the coalition. "That's a really alarming international black mark that we could be tracking towards if we don't lift our game." The reef faces a growing threat from shipping driven by expansion of the coal industry, of which Queensland is the country's largest producer. For the full story, see http://uk.reuters.com/article/2013/01/24/us-australia-barrierreef-idUKBRE90N03N20130124.