Know Your Permit

Your permit is like a key to accessing the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park and Great Barrier Reef Coast Marine Park. Each one is unique, providing different levels and types of access. They are powerful legal documents and it is your responsibility to understand and comply with all parts of your Marine Parks permit. If you do not understand your permit, contact the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority for an explanation of the various conditions.

Your Marine Parks permit will look like the one below. Please take the time to read it. Start with the definitions so you understand the specific management terms used in your permit. There are a number of management 'buzz words' that you may need to understand. Then make sure you check the key aspects of the permit especially where you can go, what you can do and any conditions that apply.

The person(s) or company named on the permit (the permittee) is responsible for all operations under that permit. Because permits are granted with protection of the environment in mind, failure to adhere to your permit may result in severe penalties.

Deed of agreement

Most standard tourism and research permits do not require a deed of agreement. Permits that contain a structure/facility, or are classified as medium to high risk, may require a two or three party deed of agreement. This deed binds the permit holder to certain obligations, such as:

  • indemnifying the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority
  • maintaining adequate insurance
  • ensuring removal of structures and clean-up of the site of operations if directed
  • the payment of a bond for structures other than vessel moorings.

Endorsements and authorisations

Some Marine Parks permits allow you to conduct a tourism activity that has been capped or limited and therefore not generally available. This is often shown as an endorsement on your permit. With some older Marine Parks permits it was advised in a formal letter of authorisation.

What if I misplace my permit?

If your permit is misplaced or damaged and you want a new copy, you can request this from the GBRMPA. The Permit Administrative Fee is listed on our website.

Emergency Breakdown

If you need to quickly change the vessel or aircraft that you are using, there are ways for you to nominate another vessel or aircraft. This will let you keep operating even when you have had a mechanical breakdown or unforeseen problems.

  • Free Zoning Maps

    Zoning maps

    If you're heading out on the water, don't forget your free Zoning Map so you know where you can go and what you can do.

  • Important milestone

    40 years anniversary

    We're delighted to celebrate the 40 years of the managing the Great Barrier Reef.

  • Visit the Reef

    fish on reef

    Visit our Great Barrier Reef and discover its amazing animals, plants, and habitats.

  • What you can do

    purple coral

    Everyone has a role to play in protecting our Great Barrier Reef. Find out what you can do to help protect this great Australian icon.

  • Report marine strandings

    turtle

    If you see sick, dead or stranded marine animals please call RSPCA QLD 1300 ANIMAL (1300 264 625)

  • Climate Change and the Great Barrier Reef

    Climate Change and the Great Barrier Reef vulnerability assessment cover image

    A Vulnerability Assessment: of the issues that could have far-reaching consequences for the Great Barrier Reef.

  • Current Conditions

    Current Conditions logo promo image

    Current Conditions: Environmental and climatic forecasts for the Great Barrier Reef