"Save the Barrier Reef" from 1967 to 2013: a forty six year old campaign that changed the Great Barrier Reef

Newlands, Maxine, Petray, Theresa, and Lloyd, Rohan (2014) "Save the Barrier Reef" from 1967 to 2013: a forty six year old campaign that changed the Great Barrier Reef. In: UNSPECIFIED. From: Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority Seminar, 22 January 2014, Townsville, QLD, Australia. (Unpublished)

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In 2013 the Great Barrier Reef hit the headlines with political debates on port expansion, dredging, UNESCO World heritage status, and tourism. From Greenpeace to conservationist Bob Irwin and octogenarian activist June Norman, environmentalists carried out media tours the length of Queensland in a campaign to 'Save the Reef'. Save the Reef '2013' came 46 years after the first campaign. In 1967 conservationist and philanthropist, John Busst, with the support of the Wildlife Preservation Society of Queensland, Queensland Littoral Society (now Australian Marine Conservation Society, AMCS) and then Prime Minister, Harold Holt, successfully prevented the Reef from being mined. The first ever 'Save the Reef' campaign successfully halted a Cairns sugar farmer's application to mine Ellison Reef for limestone. The argument for mining was that the reef was dead following a crown-of-thorns outbreak, which activists countered with scientific discourse and questions of ownership and intrinsic value.

Based on archival research and impressions from a group interview with key environmental activists of the time, this paper will be an initial exploration of the Save the Reef campaign. We will examine how the 1967 campaign engaged with the media to situate the campaign in both global and local contexts. Through this historical lens, we will pose questions about the media strategies of today's environmental campaigns.

Item ID: 34936
Item Type: Conference Item (Abstract / Summary)
Funders: Faculty of Arts, Education and Social Sciences (FAESS), James Cook University (JCU)
Date Deposited: 07 Oct 2014 03:15
FoR Codes: 19 STUDIES IN CREATIVE ARTS AND WRITING > 1903 Journalism and Professional Writing > 190301 Journalism Studies @ 40%
16 STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY > 1604 Human Geography > 160403 Social and Cultural Geography @ 60%
SEO Codes: 95 CULTURAL UNDERSTANDING > 9502 Communication > 950204 The Media @ 100%
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