Reef Guardians

The Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority's (GBRMPA) Reef Guardian program recognises the good environmental work undertaken by communities and industries to protect the Great Barrier Reef.

The program involves working closely with those who use and rely on the Reef, or its catchment, for recreation or business, to help build a healthier and more resilient Reef.

The Great Barrier Reef catchment area lies adjacent to the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area and comprises approximately twenty five per cent of the land area of Queensland. Forty drainage basins comprise the catchment area which drain directly into the Great Barrier Reef lagoon. This connection from the land to the Reef is recognised by Reef Guardian participants and their actions help to reduce their impacts on the catchment. 
The program demonstrates a hands-on, community-based approach can make a real difference to the health and resilience of the Reef. Reef Guardians are taking on voluntary actions beyond what is required by law and sharing information.  These actions will help to improve the economic sustainability of industries operating in the Great Barrier Reef Region and ensure the environmental sustainability of the Marine Park.

The Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority's Reef Guardian stewardship program began in 2003, working with schools to encourage the community to take action for a healthier Reef.

The Reef Guardian Schools initiative currently has more than 310 schools and 127,000 students involved in building the Reef’s resilience.

In 2007 the initiative was expanded to include local government councils along the Great Barrier Reef coast through the Reef Guardian Councils program.

The Reef Guardian Fishers and Reef Guardian Farmers and Graziers programs were launched in 2011 to engage with industries connected to the Reef. For more information on the program contact the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority.

Reef Guardian Collage

  • Reef Guardians Improving the outlook

    Underwater image of yellow fish swiming around coral

    The Great Barrie Reef is facing some challenges. Many people, including Reef Guardians, are making a difference. View the commercial.

  • Reef Guardian Grazier

    Grazier standing next to Ute with sheepdog on the back

    Reef Guardian graziers are helping to protect the Great Barrier reef through better farming practices.Watch the commercial.

  • Reef Guardian Banana Farmer

    Banana Famer riding four wheeler

    Reef Guardian farmers are undertaking on-farm practices that are helping to protect the Great Barrier Reef. Watch the commercial.

  • Reef Guardian Cane Farmer

    Cane farmer, wife and daughter standing next to cane fields

    Reef Guardian farmers are forward-thinking producers who are doing their bit for the Reef. Watch the commercial.

  • Reef Guardian Fisher

    Fishing family and staff posing for photo on fishing boat

    Reef Guardian fishers are fishing sustainably for the health of the Reef and their fishery. Watch the commercial.

  • Reef Guardian Marine Aquarium Collector

    Corral Collector standing next to a fishtank in the shop

    Coral Collectors hand pick corals from various locations to minimise impact and help The Great Barrier Reef. Watch the commercial.

  • Reef Guardian Council

    Reef Guardian Council Burdekin staff planting vegitation

    Reef Guardian councils across the Great Barrier Reef catchment are demonstrating Reef protection and management. Watch the commercial.

  • Reef Guardian School

    Reef Guardian school group standing in the shade of some trees

    Reef Guardian schools across Queensland are taking positive action for the environment. Watch the commercial.