Australia was spared the ignominy of having the Great Barrier Reef listed as officially in danger. But comments from member countries of the World Heritage Committee show the world is still worried about it.
The Great Barrier Reef is home to some 1,600 species of bony fish, 130 sharks and rays, and turtles, mammals and more. Most have had no population monitoring, meaning we don’t know how well they are faring.
Port traffic near the Great Barrier Reef will more than double by 2025, as coal and other exports grow. While major incidents are rare, the chronic toll on the reef itself still remains largely unknown.
With the United Nations set to decide on whether to list the Great Barrier Reef as officially in danger, we look at the various threats to the reef’s survival, starting with the biggie… climate change.