The Great Barrier Reef has received yet another disappointing report card.

There are improvements, but the Reef remains in a poor condition.

Sugar cane growers in particular, have been urged to lift their game to reduce agricultural pollutant run-off.

Ria Bhagat reports.


The Great Barrier Reef generates six billion dollars annually for the national economy, but is valued around the globe.

But its condition is still disappointing.

The bad news was unveiled at today’s International River Symposium in Brisbane.

Steven Miles, Qld Environment Minister: “If this was your kid’s report card, you’d be a bit disappointed.”

Green groups were quick to blame those responsible for managing the icon.

Sean Hoobin, WWF: “Today’s report card is a clear fail for previous programs.”

The report compiled by the federal and state governments calls on farmers to do more to reduce agricultural run-off into the delicate marine ecosystem.

Only a quarter comply with best management practice.

Russell Reichelt, Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority Chairman: “I applaud the farmer’s efforts and I genuinely think they are making a difference, this report card for the second time now shows they are.”

The Authority says financial incentives may encourage more farmers to participate.

While Steven Miles is also pinning his hopes on Malcolm Turnbull.

Steven Miles, Qld Environment Minister: “I guess having a Prime Minister who at least acknowledges the science, who at least acknowledges climate change is real, well that’s got to help.”

River runoff is considered the second largest threat to the reef and requires cooperation from both state and federal government with farmers to reduce its impact.

Ria Bhagat, QUT News.