The delivery of The Reef Trust is coordinated jointly between the Australian Government, including the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority (GBRMPA), and the Queensland Government. Established in 2014, the Reef Trust was a component of the Reef 2050 election commitment to develop the Reef 2050 Plan and establish a Reef Trust.
The Reef Trust is one of the key mechanisms assisting in the delivery of the Reef 2050 Plan, and focuses on known critical areas for investment—improving water quality and coastal habitat along the Great Barrier Reef, controlling the current outbreak of crown-of-thorns starfish, and protecting threatened and migratory species, particularly dugong and turtles.
To date, the Reef Trust has committed more than $140 million towards a range of projects to protect and conserve the outstanding universal value of the Reef. These projects are underpinned by the best available science and our collective experiences in delivering the significant existing conservation efforts to date.
This Reef Trust Investment Strategy Phase IV announces the fourth phase of investment under the Reef Trust. This phase of investment builds on three previous phases of investment and will contribute to the long-term sustainable management of the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area and the Great Barrier Reef catchments.
The fourth phase of actions focuses predominantly on reducing key pollutants—sediment and nutrients—to strive towards the Reef 2050 Plan’s ambitious targets for improved water quality entering the Reef lagoon. The actions also contribute to improving the health and resilience of coastal habitats and improving marine biodiversity.
Three key water quality projects have been identified for investment through the fourth phase—further reverse auctions for nutrient reduction in the Wet Tropics and Burdekin natural resource management regions; trials of enhanced efficiency fertilisers on sugar cane farms; and management of stream bank and gully erosion. The fourth phase also builds on previous Australian Government investment through committing further funding to combat crown-of-thorns starfish on ecologically important reefs.