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Great Barrier Reef World Heritage assessment summary

State

Key finding—Great Barrier Reef World Heritage condition

While the Outstanding Universal Value (OUV) of the Great Barrier Reef remains in good condition, the overall condition of some key attributes is poor and many have deteriorated since its World Heritage listing in 1981.

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Indicator: Condition of world heritage criteria attributes
Report cardAssessment gradeConfidence in gradeConfidence in trend
Great Barrier Reef

Grade: Good; trend: no previous report card gradeNo previous report card grade

50% confidence in grade50%

n/a

Pressure

Key finding—Climate change pressure on the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area

At a reef-wide scale, climate related variables are already having an effect, and are predicted to have an increasing impact on the Great Barrier Reef's Outstanding Universal Value (OUV).

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Indicator: Climate change
Report cardAssessment gradeConfidence in gradeConfidence in trend
Great Barrier Reef

Grade: Very poor; trend: no previous report card gradeNo previous report card grade

50% confidence50%

n/a

Key finding—Coastal development pressure on the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area

Changes to coastal habitat and reductions in connectivity are having an increasing effect on the Great Barrier Reef's Outstanding Universal Value (OUV).

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Indicator: Coastal development
Report cardAssessment gradeConfidence in gradeConfidence in trend
Great Barrier Reef

Grade: Poor; trend: no previous report card gradeNo previous report card grade

50% confidence in grade50%

n/a

Key finding—Land-based run-off pressure on the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area

Although declining marine water quality is one of the most significant threats to the Great Barrier Reef, agricultural practices are improving resulting in reductions in land-based run-off entering the region and the resulting impact on the Reef's Outstanding Universal Value (OUV).

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Indicator: Land-based run-off
Report cardAssessment gradeConfidence in gradeConfidence in trend
Great Barrier Reef

Grade: Poor; trend: no previous report card gradeNo previous report card grade

100% confidence in grade100%

n/a

Key finding—Direct use pressure on the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area

At a reef-wide scale, direct use of the region is a significant economic contributor and its impact on the Great Barrier Reef's Outstanding Universal Value (OUV) is projected to increase with population growth.

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Indicator: Direct use
Report cardAssessment gradeConfidence in gradeConfidence in trend
Great Barrier Reef

Grade: Good; trend: no previous report card gradeNo previous report card grade

100% confidence100%

n/a

Key finding—Crown-of-thorns starfish pressure on the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area

Crown-of-thorns starfish are a major predator of coral. Evidence suggests increased nutrient loads contribute to more frequent outbreaks which result in coral cover decline and deterioration of the Great Barrier Reef's Outstanding Universal Value (OUV).

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Indicator: Crown-of-thorns starfish
Report cardAssessment gradeConfidence in gradeConfidence in trend
Great Barrier Reef

Grade: Very poor; trend: grade trending downwardsTrend in report card

50% confidence in grade50%

50% confidence in trend50%

Last updated 26 October 2018