Target: Andrew Cripps, Liberal National Party’s Minister for Natural Resources
Goal: End harmful tree clearing near the Great Barrier Reef to protect the reef’s fragile and rare environment from destruction.
Land clearing is severely harming the Great Barrier Reef due to sediment runoff. When trees are cleared, loose sediment flows into rivers, which then travels to the Great Barrier Reef. The sediment blocks valuable sunlight from reaching the rare wildlife that calls the reef home, including coral and seagrass. The reef is already suffering from the worst case of coral bleaching it has ever seen. Land clearing will only make matters worse for the fragile ecosystem.
Major land clearing is occurring in Queensland. Almost 300,000 hectares of land were cleared in a single year, a third of which was near the Great Barrier Reef. If nothing is done to prevent land clearing by next year, it is estimated that 450,000 hectares may be disturbed.
Not only is the practice of land clearing costing the reef the lives of its marine creatures, it is costing the Australian government billions of dollars. An estimated $7.8 billion from private donors is needed to reduce sediment runoff currently in the reef. However, if land clearing is not banned, the officials working to protect the reef fear that philanthropists will not donate any money to something seen as a “lost cause.”
The Queensland government has already voted on the issue. However, the opposition, composed of the Liberal National Party, won the vote over the minority Palaszczuk Government. Sign the petition to demand that Andrew Cripps, a member of the opposition and the party’s Minister for Natural Resources, take this matter seriously and cooperate with his own party and the Palaszczuk Government to bring the matter to a re-vote.
The fate of the Great Barrier Reef, one of the world most unique and endangered natural wonders, should not depend upon party politics. Help make Mr. Cripps see that he and his party are on the wrong side of history in this debate.
Dear Mr. Cripps,
Recently, the matter of land clearing was brought to a vote in the Queensland government. Land clearing is severely damaging the sustainability of the Great Barrier Reef. The runoff caused from such deforestation kills plant and coral life, upon which millions of other living things depend. Unfortunately, your party was in opposition to a ban on land clearing. Due to the decision of your party, the rare plant and wildlife that the reef is home to are threatened and the Australian government is facing billions of dollars in cleanup costs.
I demand that you see the seriousness in this issue and work in a cooperative manner with all parties involved to bring the issue of land clearing to a re-vote. I hope that, given a chance to fully consider the severity of land clearing, you and your party would rethink your initial vote.
The future of the Great Barrier Reef should not be endangered due to party politics. It is one of the rarest and most amazing natural wonders our world has to offer and should be preserved for future generations. Banning land clearing would do much to make this possible.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Kyle Taylor