The Great Barrier Reef is struggling to survive, as researchers highlight even more danger is ahead. The Australian government is now trying to implement the Reef 2050 Plan.
The natural wonder might soon be dead if UNESCO and the IUCN also don’t come with a solution.
Here is what you need to know.
Where’s the Help?
Back in 2019, both the IUCN and UNESCO cited a report by the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority.
That included the ecosystem’s deteriorating situation due to global warming that triggered coral bleaching events between 2016 and 2017, followed in 2020 by a massive bleaching event.
The report stated that Australia’s efforts on the Reef 2050 plan didn’t meet any crucial targets and that the plan must be fortified. So, nothing really happened. The Great Barrier Reef continued to suffer.
Climate Change is Not the Only to Blame
There are other many pressures that push the Great Barrier Reef to the limit. One of those things is the poor water quality due to nutrient and sediment runoff.
According to UNESCO, the Reef 2050 Plan doesn’t accurately highlight the climate change threat. So, it urges the Australian government to change that and make sure it includes other threats, such as the water quality.
Could Tourism Be Affected?
The Great Barrier Reef’s tragic situation may not affect tourism as some have feared.
If we take a look at other regions, including the Galapagos Islands, or Belize in the Caribbean, the tourism didn’t suffer too much after an in-danger listing. However, things don’t work the same for everybody.
We might as well witness how industries that rely on a healthy reef may end up highly damaged if the Great Barrier Reef’s situation will deteriorate even more.
We should remember that, after all, an in-danger listing is not permanent. Also, it doesn’t mean that the Great Barrier Reed will be removed from the World Heritage list permanently.
One thing is clear. The reef will still suffer until nations decide to collectively adopt more accurate climate goals, including sea temperature stabilization and global greenhouse gas emissions drop to net-zero.