Landmark victory for the Great Barrier Reef
In the Great Barrier Reef, larger fish inside no-take areas produce disproportionately more eggs and larvae than in areas that are fished. Besides their contribution to sustaining fisheries, no-take areas can also improve habitat quality, protect ecosystem structure and function, and maintain ecosystem goods and services.
New laws passed by the Australian State of Queensland banning the dumping of industrial dredge spoil in the entire Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Site area represent a signiﬁcant victory in the campaign to prevent further deterioration of the Reef, an iconic global conservation priority. WWF and the Australian Marine Conservation Society have been campaigning against activities that are damaging the health of the Reef, especially the dumping of spoil dredged from the seabed to enlarge mineral export terminals. The law banning dumping is a victory for public engagement – more than 500,000 people signed a petition against industrial dumping in the World Heritage area.