Climate change impact on Great Barrier Reef may become irreversible: Report

The report had been published by the Australian Academy of Science assessing the possible future of the Great Barrier Reef under different emission scenarios

Great Barrier Reef (Photo: DW)
Great Barrier Reef (Photo: DW)


An Australian government commissioned report on Thursday revealed that the impacts of climate change on the iconic Great Barrier Reef could become irreversible within decades.

The report, published by the Australian Academy of Science (AAS) assessed the possible futures of the Great Barrier Reef under different emissions scenarios, reports Xinhua news agency.

It concluded that by 2050 the damage to the world's largest coral reef could be irreparable regardless of whether global carbon emissions stabilise or not.

The report was ordered by the federal Department of Climate Change, Energy, the Environment and Water, which engaged the AAS to hold three expert roundtables on climate impacts on the Great Barrier Reef, interventions and the reef's future.

More than 80 leading experts contributed to the report.

It was delivered to the Reef 2050 Plan Independent Expert Panel to consider in its advice to the government on the resilience of the GBR and its connected systems.

"It reminds us that sticking to that path we are currently on, simply because we started on it, will not offer the best solution for the Great Barrier Reef," Chennupati Jagadish, President of the AAS, said in a statement.

"It highlights that in the medium-term, there are opportunities to slow the decline in the health of the reef, however, this requires Australia to take further action now."

The report makes several recommendations to improve management of the reef, including establishing a comprehensive review of the current system, further relying on Indigenous knowledge of land management and standardising and centralizing ecological data from the Great Barrier Reef.

"Truthful, open, and clear communication with the public is needed to prepare Australians for what is to come, given the Great Barrier Reef will continue to change as the environment becomes more challenging for its habitats and species," it said.

Follow us on: Facebook, Twitter, Google News, Instagram 

Join our official telegram channel (@nationalherald) and stay updated with the latest headlines