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Great Barrier Reef delivers $56 billion value for Australia

Great Barrier Reef delivers $56 billion value for Australia
June 26, 2017

A new report has calculated the total asset value of Queensland’s Great Barrier Reef to be $56 billion, assessing the World Heritage site’s economic, social and brand value together in one study for the first time.

The report by Deloitte Access Economics calculates the reef’s total value by adding the benefits accrued to those who directly use the Great Barrier Reef - for recreation, fishing, science or as tourists - and the value attributed by people for its existence and its iconic stature.

Commissioned by the Great Barrier Reef Foundation, the report also assesses the Reef’s value through industry value added and employment along with its significance to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Traditional Owners.

Deloitte Access Economics partner and lead report author John O’Mahony said the report shows the Great Barrier Reef is seen as the natural asset that contributes most powerfully to Australia’s global brand.

O’Mahony stated “of course it’s priceless and irreplaceable, but we’ve been able to look at it as an ‘asset’ that has incredible value on multiple fronts – from its biodiversity and job creating potential to its support for critical industries and standing among international visitors to Australia, and even those who have never been there.

“With the Reef under threat, our report is a major step in looking to value nature’s significance in monetary terms and using this information to help inform what we do to protect and save important natural assets.”

Great Barrier Reef Foundation Director Steve Sargent said the report sends a clear message that “the Great Barrier Reef is too big to fail”

He added “at $29 billion, tourism is the biggest contributor to the Reef’s $56 billion value, followed by $23.8 billion from indirect or non-use value, i.e. those who haven’t yet visited the Reef but value knowing it exists, and its value to recreational users  - $3.2 billion - makes up the balance.

“Alongside its important environmental and ecological function, this report demonstrates that the Reef also offers substantial value to Australia and the world in terms of the economic activity it generates and the employment and experiences it supports across the tourism, fishing, recreation and scientific industries.”

Two-thirds of survey respondents said they are prepared to pay to protect the Reef, based on its importance to the planet, a belief that future generations should be able to visit it and its importance to biodiversity.

Sargent concluded “this report is a critical step toward truly understanding what’s at stake, as most of us can’t, and don’t want to, imagine a world without the Great Barrier Reef.”

The report is the first time a natural asset’s brand value has been assessed in this way and considered as part of the overall asset value.

Click here to download the report.

21st June 2017 - WORLD HERITAGE COMMITTEE REPORT CONFIRMS GLOBAL ACTION REQUIRED TO SAVE REEFS 

4th June 2017 - UN REPORT SHOWS CHALLENGES IN PROTECTING THE GREAT BARRIER REEF 

25th March 2017 - REPORT SUGGESTS GREAT BARRIER REEF CORAL BLEACHING COULD DETER ONE MILLION VISITORS

3rd February 2017 - UNESCO AND UNWTO COMBINE TO LAUNCH 2017 AS INTERNATIONAL YEAR OF SUSTAINABLE TOURISM

12th September 2016 - SYDNEY’S BEACHES DELIVER $2 BILLION IN SOCIAL VALUE

8th October 2016 - VISITS TO THE GREAT BARRIER REEF AN EXAMPLE OF ‘LAST CHANCE TOURISM’

27th June 2016 - CLIMATE CHANGE A MASSIVE THREAT TO GLOBAL HERITAGE AND TOURISM

7th May 2016 - GREAT BARRIER REEF TOURISM OPERATORS CALL FOR ACTION TO TACKLE CLIMATE CHANGE


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