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Greens look to shore up numbers for Barrier Reef inquiry

THE Greens have called on Labor and other Senators to back a Senate inquiry into the management of the Great Barrier Reef.

Senator Larissa Waters will move for the inquiry on Thursday to examine the management of the reef, including current and proposed port developments along the coast.

The call for the inquiry comes after recent revelations that under current plans, neither the Queensland nor Commonwealth future management plans were likely to prevent further decline of the reef.

While the minor party has not yet garnered enough support for the inquiry, Labor is understood to be considering the terms of reference.

Development in areas the inquiry would investigate includes Gladstone Harbour, Abbot Point, Port Alma and the Fitzroy Delta, and Cape Melville and Bathurst Bay.

Sen Waters said due to an "onslaught of development", the World Heritage Committee was warning the reef could be downgraded to a World Heritage site in danger.

She said with five new or expanded ports proposed, the multitude of developments could see "the disaster that was the Gladstone Harbour expansion spread across our reef".

Sen Waters called on all Senators to support the establishment of the inquiry to get "all the evidence and concerns out on the table" to find a way to safeguard the future protection of the reef.


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