Target: Tony Abbott, Prime Minister of Australia
Goal: Commend Abbott for protecting Australia’s Great Barrier Reef from dangerous sand dumping
Australia recently announced its decision to prohibit dumping of dredged sand near the continent’s Great Barrier Reef. Environmental groups were concerned about the impact that dumping sand near the reef would have, arguing that the area is too fragile and its ecosystem too important, to allow for this disruption. While companies intent on dumping in the reef have agreed to comply with the prohibition, they are attempting to dump on land instead. The reef’s current protection is applauded by many environmental groups; it is necessary that this protection stays current.
Plans are currently underway to create the world’s largest coal port- in Australia. Dredging is the removal of debris, sand and other sediments from large bodies of water, often to accommodate for water traffic. In Australia’s case, the sand and other debris are being displaced due to the construction of the coal port. The sediment would not have been directly dumped on the reef; rather, it would have been dispersed 15 miles away.
Anything introduced nearby that could potentially disrupt the Great Barrier Reef should not be permitted. The sediment, even miles away, could easily make its way to the reef. This option for expanding the port is off the table, so the reef and threatened wildlife that call the area home will not be disturbed in this manner. Thank the Australian government for considering the health of the reef above corporate power- this time. Encourage the Prime Minister to keep the Great Barrier Reef safe in the future.
Dear Tony Abbott,
I am writing to thank you for prohibiting dredged sand from being displaced close to the Great Barrier Reef. I understand that the port where the dredged sand came from will eventually be responsible for shipping 120 million tons of coal to receiving countries. This will undoubtedly affect the surrounding ecosystems negatively; I urge you to keep the health of the Great Barrier Reef, as well as the surrounding ocean, a constant concern.
Even though the reef is now safe from this sediment, other areas of the ocean are not. Please consider all environmental impacts along the coast of Australia, and encourage your environmental council to do the same. The Great Barrier Reef is home to threatened species, including the large green turtle, as well as 1,500 species of fish. The coral is extremely sensitive to ecosystem changes and would greatly suffer if left to the whim and will of coal companies.
You must never falter; you must protect the reef and the ocean for the entirety of your term.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Great Barrier Reef Encounter via Wikimedia