Tuesday, January 23, 2018


On the day Prime Minister Malcolm  Turnbull  was in Townsville   announcing   a token  outlay of  $60million  for  Great  Barrier  Reef scientific   research , steps to reduce  runoff   and  an  extended  attack on the  Crown of Thorns starfish , across   the water ,  at  the city's  Jewel in the Crown - Magnetic Island - the great  (extensively  diminished )   Welcome to Magnetic Island  wall  of  banners  was   in  further disarray , collapsed in part  , below , showing how well   an  important  part  of  the  GBR Marine  Park   is   looked  after and  made look attractive and well  run  to  tourists  coming  in  by  ferry .  
The Townsville Bulletin , not surprisingly, ran a  story quoting  the PM as "slamming"    Great  Barrier Reef  "doomsayers " and "green groups "  speaking out  about the condition of  the  reef  and opposing the proposed  Adani  Carmichael   mine , which  would  produce  cleaner  coal  for  India . 
 By this  broadside , was he  referring to  Sir David Attenborough  and Townsville's own  coral expert  Charlie  Veron   as  these   doomsayers ?  The report  did not  say so , but did  any  reporter  present   ask  the  obvious   question  about  the  two   who  raised  very  important  issues , climate change one of them ,  about  the  plight of the  GBR  in  the  recent brilliant  three part   television  series ?  
 One memorable  segment  in  the documentary  showed  the two men  discussing  the   threats to the  reef  , its  grim  future if  prompt and massive action is not taken  ,  Veron , showing signs of exasperation , saying  there was  so much  that  government  could  do  but   was  not . 
Some time back , the   Sydney Morning  Herald  carried an interesting interview with  Veron , dubbed  a  second  Charles  Darwin  by Attenborough , in which it was said he  was planning to move away   from   the  coast  near Townsville   to   the Atherton Tablelands  because of the inevitable increase  in sea  levels due to   global warming / climate change . It  seemed this  uplift  was  prompted  by a  strong  desire to  save his  books  as  much   as  not  wanting  to be inundated . Not the kind of story you would expect  to read  in the Townsville Bulletin, especially as   the city is about to start  building , for hundreds of  millions ,  a limited  use  football  stadium  on  the flat, not  far from  the seaside .  
PS from Malcolm Turnbull  . The latest newsletter from the PM  highlights the new proposed TPP agreement ,   adds a  PS - pointing out earlier in the week he had been in Townsville to announce a major investment to improve the  health of the Great Barrier Reef.  He then invited people  to read the post , which  attracted a large number of  comments , mainly  critical  of  him , the  government ,  Adani .