Australia’s world-famous Great Barrier Reef has been assigned a monetary value for the first time.
The financial advising company Deloitte Access Economics has outlined the worth of one of nature’s most spectacular wonders. Deloitte’s report puts a value of US$42.5 billion on the reef, and a worth of US$4.9 billion a year to the Australian economy. It also supports 64,000 full-time jobs in the tourism, fishing, recreation and scientific research industries. This is over three times more than those employed by Australia’s national airline Qantas. The report says: “The livelihoods and businesses the reef supports across Australia far exceeds the numbers supported by many industries we would consider too big to fail.”
Deloitte says quantifying the World Heritage-listed reef’s worth is one attempt at conserving it for future generations. People will look after the reef better if they know how valuable it is. Deloitte said the reef is worth “more than 12 Sydney Opera Houses“.
However, the reef and its 1,700 fish species are in danger. Global warming is bleaching and killing the reef’s coral. A local businessman said it was “astounding” that a value was put on the reef. He said: “Why on earth do we need…to quantify it in terms of money? We have a social conscience to look after the Great Barrier Reef…. It’s on our doorstep and we should be looking after
it.” He added: “If that motivates our politicians…then that is good.”
Sources: whitsundaytimes.com / cnbc.com / forbes.com
Talk about these words from the article.
world-famous / monetary / value / financial /tourism / employed / airline / reef /quantifying / future / generations / valuable /coral / astounding / social / politicians
(The words in bold are from the news article.)
9. on our doorstep
a) What do you know about the Great Barrier Reef?
b) What use is there of putting a monetary value on the reef?
c) How do you think the company valued the reef?
d) Should all natural wonders be valued?
e) Should someone be able to buy the Great Barrier Reef?
f) What dangers does the Great Barrier Reef face?
g) Would it be useful to treat the Great Barrier Reef as a company
h) What is the best way to protect the Great Barrier Reef?
i) What do you think the Great Barrier Reef will be like in 100 years?
j) Do you think people will value the reef more?
k) What do you think of the comparison with 12 Sydney Opera Houses?
l) What damage does bleaching do to the reef?
m) How will a social conscience help the reef?
n) What can politicians do to help the reef?
o) What questions would you like to ask Deloitte?