Managing for a resilient Reef

Climate change is the greatest threat to coral reefs worldwide. We are working to understand the the risks of climate change and other threats to the Reef, and helping reef communities and industries adapt to the changing environment. A resilient Reef is better able to withstand stress and cope with impacts of disturbances.

Our strategic assessment, the Reef 2050 Long-Term Sustainability Plan and Great Barrier Reef Climate Change Adaptation Strategy and Action Plan 2012-2017 outline actions to improve the health and resilience of the Great Barrier Reef.

We are working with our management partners to build the Reef’s resilience by:

  • continuing to make no-take areas effective as refuges for key species
  • identifying and protecting critical habitats
  • working with communities and industries to improve stewardship for local reefs
  • understanding the interactions between threats to improve targeting of management efforts
  • monitoring and evaluating patterns of damage and recovery after disturbances to inform the need for additional management measures.

Reef Summit

On 24 and 25 May 2017, over 70 regional, national and international delegates representing marine park managers, Traditional Owners, government agencies, research institutions, industry groups, Reef users and other stakeholders participated in Great Barrier Reef Summit – Managing for Resilience.

The key objective of the Summit was to develop a blueprint for the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority and its partners in response to mass bleaching and cumulative impacts on the Great Barrier Reef. An important part of this was to develop resilience initiatives focusing on coral reef habitats.

It was clear from the event there is a strong and shared commitment to work together—to develop a blueprint for change, to implement actions, and communicate the challenges facing the Reef. The blueprint is currently in development.

Our strong take away message was: together we can secure the future of the Reef – we have to try harder, do more and act now.