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ScoMo Is Sending Ambassadors On A Snorkelling Trip To Prove The Great Barrier Reef Isn’t Dying

The Federal Government is flying intentional ambassadors from the World Heritage Committee to the Great Barrier in a bid to prevent it from being added to the World Heritage In Danger List.

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Ambassadors from more than a dozen countries will be flown to the Great Barrier Reef this Thursday for a snorkelling trip, in a bid to prevent it from being added to UNESCO’s World Heritage In Danger List, according to The Guardian.

Nine of the countries have voting rights on the World Heritage Committee, which is overseen by China, and meets once a year to implement the World Heritage Convention. The two-week online convention starting this Friday.

A UNESCO report released in June which discusses the protection of World Heritage sites said the long-term outlook for the Great Barrier Reef had “deteriorated from poor to very poor and that climate change remains the most serious threat for the property.”

“Despite many positive achievements … progress has been insufficient in meeting key targets of the Reef 2050 Plan,” the report reads, calling for urgent action to counter the effects of climate change.

The warning of being added to the In Danger list was backed by five of the world’s leading reef and climate scientists.

But the Australian Government is pushing back against the potential “In Danger” status, launching what the Guardian has called “an all out lobbying offensive”.

The official reef ambassador Warren Entsch will take the representatives, including those from Russia, Spain, Brazil and Hungary, to visit Agincourt Reef.

(Side note, are all of these people going through hotel quarantine? Don’t we still have Australians stuck overseas?)

The Guardian reports they will be accompanied by officials from the Australian Institute of Marine Science and the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority, along with Indigenous rangers.

“It’s important countries that are voting on this need to be able to say they have put their head under the water and have spoken to world experts. Then they can make their own decision. This is good practice and this is what should be happening,” Entsch said.

On Tuesday, Queensland Premiere Annastacia Palaszczuk wrote to Prime Minister Scott Morrison on requesting “new and united action”, in a letter seen by the Brisbane Times.

She called for $2 billion for energy and emissions-reduction projects in Queensland to safeguard tens of thousands of jobs that rely on the reef.

Will the great jewel of Australia be added to sad list? Depends on how that snorkelling trip goes.