Acting Premier predicts reef to stay off 'in danger' list
IN THE face of a damning report, acting Premier Jackie Trad remains upbeat the Great Barrier Reef will not be listed as in danger.
During an address about Energising infrastructure and trade for Queensland in Brisbane on Thursday Ms Trad said when the UNESCO World Heritage Committee meets in Bonn, Germany, later this month, it would almost certainly decide to keep the reef off the in-danger list.
She and Great Barrier Reef Minister Dr Steven Miles will attend the meeting to lobby the international community to adopt the committee's recommendation from May that the 2300km-long icon should not be listed as in danger.
During her speech Ms Trad touted the Queensland Government's reef protection plan as persuading UNESCO not to list the reef as in danger.
Her comments come after a Queensland Audit Office report tabled in parliament on Wednesday questioned the veracity of one of the statements the committee relied on when making its draft decision.
The Auditor-General said the Great Barrier Reef Report Card's statement that the goal to halt and reverse the decline in water quality entering the reef had been achieved should "be treated with caution".
The Auditor-General offered a scathing review of the Queensland Government's reef plan to address poor quality water entering the reef from catchments.
The report said the plan's water quality and land management targets were unlikely to be realised.
The QAO proposed Queensland's newly formed Great Barrier Reef Office be provided with sufficient management and administrative authority to be held properly accountable for the state's reef management strategies and programs.
It also suggested the reef plan programs be reviewed; catchment monitoring be expanded; a rigorous verification process be applied to data on land management practice; and changes to the reef report card.