CLIMATE CHANGE AT RISK - wwf - Australia
The bleached coral of Lorne Reef near Townsville, with Rattlesnake Island in the background during the 1998 mass coral bleaching event. Credit: GBRMPA The implications of CLIMATE CHANGE FOR AUSTRALIA’S GREAT BARRIER REEF AT People and industries AT RISK WWF Australia and the Queensland Tourism Industry Council commissioned a revolutionary new study on Australia’s Great Barrier Reef. This study explores possible ‘futures’ for the Reef, a complex task that involves the analysis of vast sets of information ranging from the climate sciences to the biology and economics of Australia’s coral reef industries. The analysis reveals a range of possible futures, some of which are more desirable than others from economic, social and environmental perspectives. Some of these futures are disturbing and must be avoided. This is the first study of its kind to outline how the future might unfold and how specific actions taken today will craft tomorrow’s world. Strong action to increase ecological resilience while simultaneously reducing greenhouse gas emissions today will be instrumental in securing the economic and environmental wealth of Australia tomorrow. Australia must act to influence the global agenda, and this report provides some guidance on what to do. The report seeks to answer the burning questions: What will climate change do to Australia’s Great Barrier Reef and its people, and what can we do to minimise future impacts?