Great Barrier Reef
Great Barrier Reef

Great Barrier Reef priceless no more: wonder worth $56b

A NEW report has valued the Great Barrier Reef at $56 billion and warns of vast economic consequences for Australia unless more is done to protect it.

The Deloitte Access Economics report says the World Heritage-listed icon underpins 64,000 direct and indirect jobs, and contributes $6.4 billion to the national economy each year.

But without ramped-up protection efforts, it warns much of that could be at risk as the reef suffers from repeated mass coral bleaching events, poor water quality and climate change.

"The reef is critical to supporting economic activity and jobs in Australia. The livelihoods and businesses it supports across Australia far exceeds the numbers supported by many industries we would consider too big to fail," says the report, prepared for the Great Barrier Reef Foundation.

Of the 64,000 jobs linked to the reef, 39,000 are direct jobs - making the reef a bigger "employer" than the likes of Telstra, the Qantas Group, National Australia Bank, and the oil and gas extraction industry.

Read more at the Courier-Mail

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