I've been shedding lots of tears in the last few weeks. Gaza. Flight MH17. Ukraine. The "disappearing" of 157 Tamils who came to Australia to seek asylum. The wanton destruction of our environment by my own and other governments.
In recent months, our neo-conservative government has sought to de-list the Great Barrier Reef from UNESCO World Heritage Listing. It failed due to a massive protest from people all over the World.
Despite UNESCO's ruling, this morning, our supposed Environment Minister Greg Hunt announced the decision to approve the Carmichael Coal Mine in the Galilee Basin, Queensland. Apart from the effects of coal dust and the run-off from the water table, the mining company plan on dumping 5 million cubic tonnes of spoil directly onto the Great Barrier Reef.
The Carmichael Coal Mine, owned by Indian company Adani, will be the largest coal mine in the world. All environmental studies - including government studies - and scientific experts have unanimously agreed that the creation of a coal mine this size in this location will inevitably destroy our greatest treasure, the Great Barrier Reef.
Of course the Reef is our jewel, but it is also the largest living thing on the planet and is home to the largest most varied ecosystem in the world.
I'm sorry world, Australia has failed you.
This photo is of Saxon Reef, taken from a helicopter at 1000 metres.
Adani had this video clip deleted from Youtube, but here it is again: The Destruction of Our Reef
Critiques | Translate
jemaflor (85374) 2014-07-27 23:36
Interesting view about this problem, nice colors contrast, good note.
mirosu (14398) 2014-07-28 1:36
Many thanks for your intro note. I was reading it two times, still cannot believe. Is this possible in Australia? If yes than nobody can save this planet. I was snorkeling in Great Barrier Reef, 75km offshore in 1988. I'll never in my life forget this beauty. Something that nobody can create, nobody can restore if it was damaged.
Anyhow your photo is excellent.
Very well done.
P.s. Sorry for my slow response, but my access to internet is not very regular during my travelling.
timecapturer (49278) 2014-07-28 3:28
words fail me! and that takes a lot, believe me. As you know there is little chance of me diving in and seeing the beauty of this natural Earth wonder, but I love seeing footage and pictures of it and it is so unique and beautiful, as this picture lays testament to. Utter lunacy and sheer madness!! The world seems to have gone into reverse lately and I cannot fathom why?
Try and keep the faith Lisa - B X
snunney (84742) 2014-07-28 4:13
Yes, this decision has even made it into the British newspapers. It all comes down to greed and short-sighted politicians who are always only interested in the next election result.
daddo (24402) 2014-07-28 4:55
Ciao Lisa. I didn't know about this latest act of wanton destruction but then I have stopped listening a while ago to anything the current government has to say due to total despair.We are going in the same direction as the Easter Islanders and the Pueblo Indians who chopped the last tree and then disappeared from the pages of history. Either a lot of people have given up hope as I have or are totally disconnected with their fellow man or the earth on which they depend.In the short time that the Caucasians have been in control of this continent, they have destroyed great rivers, lakes, forests and coastal ecosystems. The Aboriginal people have been caring custodians of this land for so long, yet we ignore their words.By contras, the Bible gives man dominion over the natural world- lots of rights to kill and plunder but no responsibility to preserve and that has been the mantra of the West wherever they went. I don't know if God does cry, but I wouldn't be surprised if he does when he looks down on his colourful and magical Barrier Reef and sees how unloved it is. In a Buddhist hell Mr Hunt would be forever tortured over a coal fueled fire while his lungs filled with coal dust. Let's hope such a hell exists for the scum on this earth. Con una furtiva lacrima. Klaudio.
Sergiom (61036) 2014-07-28 5:56
It feels like our governement are quite alike . Both are very conservative and are only thinking about jobs, jobs and jobs. Our minister of environment is quite like yours: a promoter of clean jobs when we all know that your coal and our sand tar are a nightmare.
Our only alternative is to get them out of power and we will.
Have a nice day anyway
SnapRJW (31427) 2014-07-28 5:58
Hi Lisa - I've just watched the link you posted on FB and I have to say that this beggars belief. What makes it so difficult for supposedly intelligent leaders to understand the delicate balance of our world's ecosystems? My two small grandsons have a better understanding of the need to be good custodians of the natural wonders of our world.
The love of money is the root of all evil.
photoray (12465) 2014-07-28 6:38
Dang! Now I'm crying too. The Rich & Greedy continue to dominate and ignore not only human decency when it comes to profits, but also Nature. Their control of politicians and government employees permits them to continue whatever agenda they wish. And it happens at all levels of government.
And a big stupidity is that coal is not only toxic and destructive but alternative energy is better and more profitable. A few wind turbines can provide enough electricity to run a small town. Roof solar panels can provide enough electricity for an entire home's needs. etc. etc... And like all the negative propaganda aimed at the electric car by the dominating oil companies, many people believe their lies to be true. Alon Musk and others are proving them wrong.
A fine view of the Great Barrier Reef in green hues with the vast fields of coral visible below.
Coral is the life blood of the ocean for all marine animals and plants. But it is fragile to human toxins, and easily destroyed. The Sierra Club has been telling us to visit it before it is gone.
Fighting the Rich & Greedy's propaganda bullshit is one step in the right direction.
Keep up the fine journalism and photo images,
CLODO (30597) 2014-07-28 6:58
All the events you write are nothing compare to what is going to happen in Autralia and in the world. Money is governing the world, and destroying it too. I have been in New Caledonia for 10 month during my army period and I remember all the jewels I have seen even at 1 meter above the sea level.
Nice blue planet picture!
holmertz (41651) 2014-07-28 7:13
The shortsighted stupidity of some governments is just unbelievable, and unfortunately the present rulers of Australia seem to be more stupid than most, even more so because they were democratically elected. This picture is different from most at TE but an important contribution according to the ideas of the site.
Noel_Byrne (24840) 2014-07-28 11:55
I knew from the title that this be an image that would make me sad....and indeed it has. To be honest Lisa, I really don't think I have the verbal ability to express how I feel when I read your note, it saddens me, it sickens me, it angers me, but I also realise that being from Ireland, I am no place to throw stones, the same sh@t is happening here every day with talks of tracking, destruction of the landscape, our protected bogs being burnt and much much more. Like you I see over the past few weeks, bombs, bullets, war and famine, and I agree with the comment above that the world is going backwards.
But, on the other hand, were it not for thoughtful souls such as you, we would not even know about this catastrophe, god knows the media won't report it. We're it not for people like you there would be nobody standing up and saying no. You may be arrested Lisa, and given the power, I'd be standing right next to you. It's a shame hat apathy has taken over so much of the world.
But in saying that, is it fair to call it apathy, or is it just burn out? I remember years ago just before my mum died, I was in hospital and she was being treated so badly. A social worker said that we should be fighting this, and demanding more, but she understood that with working a full time job and then being a full time carer, she knew that we were too tired to fight And that was the case with so many people. Sounds like I am making excuses, but I guess I am struggling to understand this and make some sense of it.
I see Daddios comment above and I have to say, I don't wish evil into the world but his descriptions of an ironic hell seem apt.
With you in spirit Lisa, it's only your energy and focus and that of your kindred spritis that can prevent this fro happening, and in a million years when mankind has long since passed, the world will smile at the memory of your work in documenting this, and helping preserve it.
Oh what a rambling post, sorry.
P.S. thank you for your kind comments on my Irish farmer, that's one of the nicest things anybody has ever said about one of my pics :)
carlo62 (33721) 2014-07-28 14:51
questo è uno di quei momenti in cui mi chiedo a cosa sia servito agli uomini studiare. La cultura dovrebbe aprire gli occhi, far conoscere, per poi migliorare, mentre vedo solo peggioramenti in tutto questo.
L'uomo ha sconfitto malattie antiche per crearne nuove, ho portato civiltà distruggendo civiltà più antiche, la vita che facciamo adesso ci permette di vivere molti anni in più, ma a cosa possono servire se non avremo più un mondo in cui vivere.
Sono sempre più convinto che l'uomo è l'unica vera malattia del mondo.
lousat (77790) 2014-07-28 15:15
Ciao Lisa,davvero incredibile quello che sta succedendo,e poi il carbone è un combustibile che andrebbe abolito,causa del maggior inquinamento mondiale.Non ho parole....complimenti per la foto,sperando che i nostri nipoti possano farla anche loro fra 50 anni....buon Martedi'.Luciano
dkmurphys (49992) 2014-07-29 5:01
You're right, the need for power and money is bigger than any feeling of humanity for some of us. Sad but true...
macjake (57062) 2014-07-29 17:05
well, i'm not even going to TRY to compete with Klaudio's critique, its well written and certainly memorable.
I have a question...how long are these scum politicians in power for? Here in Canada the Party can hold power for only 4 years, then there has to be another re-election, what about in Australia?
Lets hope the people can vote them OUT asap.
Whats so surprising is how big business and some media types follow the current regime. I guess money talks, how sad is that.
In my honest opinion the recent "WIN" you mentioned about keeping the Barrier Reef listed as a UNESCO sight was 100% planned by your government.
Its the CLASSIC Bait and Switch technique.
I seriously think the government KNEW they wouldn't win that case, but went after it to give the people a win in the battle to shut them up - sort of speak.
knowing full well, the governments first priority was that mining deal - that was their PRIMARY target from the get go.
So they were thinking lets give the people a small win, but we will win the war, classic bait and switch.
Perhaps they think it will give the people some satisfaction in that they succeeded in keeping the sight a Unesco sight, but the government didn't give a rats ass in the first place. They now have what they were after.
Lets hope mother nature finds a way to win out in the end. Mother nature almost always finds a way.
I appreciate and admire your passion, dedication and ethics, i really do.
GO Mother Nature!!
williewhistler (14603) 2014-07-30 2:35
it is very important that you illustrate to us the devastation being caused by greedy and corrupt politicians,there can be no justification for these outrageous actions.
Our day will come.....
Kindest regards Les.
kasianowak (6805) 2014-07-31 3:17
This is awful news and thanks for sharing it, I didn't have a clue what they were up to.
The Great Barrier Reef is a world treasure and no one should have a right to endanger it or destroy it.
danos (87427) 2014-07-31 23:28
this year a lot of disasters taken place and unfortunately the Planet is in its worst.An informative note,a cry for the world that injured.
Nice the view of the sea from the passing by helicopter as we can see the beauty of it with the waves to agitated a bit.
ourania (31971) 2014-08-01 7:24
Hello dear Lisa,
it's shocking to see how little the environment, human lives and dignity count against the greediness of businesspeople and politicians. Maybe people around the world think their own government is an outrageous exception but the similarity of patterns, bills, attitudes and speeches is absolutely striking. They don't even have to lie anymore, they just go on and do it despite the warnings of their own studies. What a pity to lose such a treasure that exists for such a long part in the planet's history just like that. What a lovely and touching picture. You do a great work, thank you!
All the best, have a lovely month,
emka (79737) 2014-08-01 22:29
I just can't understand it. How one can be so greedy and selfish? Ans all this destruction for what? Very good this video clip, great it is on Youtube again, but it will not help. Just no words for this.
Beautiful view of the reef from above. Very sad time. I share all your feelings about the recent situation.
Warm regrads Malgo
Mics (687) 2014-08-04 23:38
I honestly feel sorry for this. You are not alone feeling this way. The utter disregard and disrespect to nature and the environment seem to be an alien concept to some people, not only in your country, not only in your government, but mostly in countries, including mine. The attempt to de-list the Great Barrier Reef from the UNESCO World Heritage Listing by your government is a clear attempt to legitimize the approval on the action of the Environment Ministry on the mining activities of the Carmichael Coal Mine....making sure that “they will not be in violation of something”.
Having heard the arguments of big mining companies before, I still stand firm on my belief that “mining cannot be sustainable”. Trying to prove that was part of the thesis I intended to write when I was in graduate school, way, way back...(which I failed to finish writing). Mining is a “highly extractive” activity getting resources that is clearly not renewable...and to dump million cubic tonnes of waste directly to the Great Barries Reef is totally abominable! Sorry, I am just pouring my heart out. I presently work in the environment department here in my country (Department of Environment and Natural Resources)...and sometimes, I feel quite awkward and uncomfortable...though I may not have direct participation on the policy direction of my government..hearing and/or learning that governments can be bought by big multinational or transnational companies simply breaks my heart...and being part of the structure, but not necessarily the system is something I have to deal with sometimes....errr, in addition, governments can be bought not only by big corporations but also by “big” local politicians backed by local elites who have stakes in big businesses...or, big businessmen running for political office to ensure that their business interests are safe.
Sorry Lisa, I feel like I am lashing out already. Thank you for sharing this photo and I still hope that this note/comment would still find you well.
P.S. “When Corporations Rule The World” by David Korten is a good read ;-)
Silvio1953 (123367) 2014-08-15 2:12
Ciao Lisa, favolosa foto con triste nota, speriamoche le generazioni future imparino a rispettare di piu' il nostro povero mondo e la smattano di uccidersi tra loro, buon Ferragosto, un abbraccio Silvio