With help, the tourism industry can recover after COVID-19, but only if there is a healthy Great Barrier Reef to visit once this crisis is over.

In response to the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority’s confirmation of ‘very widespread’ mass coral bleaching on the Great Barrier Reef, Australian Conservation Foundation climate change program manager Gavan McFadzean said:

“This confirmation of very widespread coral bleaching on the Great Barrier Reef, caused by warming waters associated with climate change, is deeply disturbing.

“This is the third major bleaching event on the Barrier Reef in the last five years.

“The Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority has again confirmed that climate change is the greatest single challenge the reef faces.

“Australians are intensely proud of the Great Barrier Reef, it is a haven for marine life and is the foundation of a tourist industry presently being hit hard by the impacts of coronavirus.

“With help, the tourism industry can recover after COVID-19, but only if there is a healthy Great Barrier Reef to visit once this crisis is over.

“The continued burning of coal, oil and gas is overheating the ocean and damaging the beautiful Barrier Reef through these all-too-frequent bleaching events.

“Australia should urgently phase out coal, oil and gas to give the reef a chance to survive.”

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