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Australia is home to vast mineral deposits and a mining boom fuelled by demand from China kept Australia economy strong during the global financial crisis. Though the boom is now cooling as demand from China slows, Prime Minister Tony Abbott and his conservative government have vowed to focus their efforts on reviving the industry.

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Environment Minister Greg Hunt has vowed that of the strictest conditions in Australian history will be in place to protect the reef from harm, including water quality measures and safeguards for the reef plants and animals.

But outraged conservationists say the already fragile reef will be gravely threatened by the dredging, which will occur over a 184 hectare area. Apart from the risk that the sediment will smother coral and seagrass, the increased shipping traffic will boost the risk of accidents, such as oil spills and collisions with delicate coral beds, environment groups argue. for a permit to dump the sediment within the marine park in a location that does not contain any coral or seagrass beds.

In a report released in 2012, UNESCO expressed concern about development along the reef, including ports, and warned that the marine park was at risk of being listed as a World Heritage site in danger.

response, Queensland Premier Campbell Newman said his government would protect the environment but not at the expense of the state economy.

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Great Barrier Reef on Friday, Jan. 31, 2014, approved a plan to dump vast swathes of sediment on the reef as part of a major coal port expansion a decision that environmentalists say will endanger one of the world most fragile ecosystems. Environment Minister Greg Hunt has vowed that "some of the strictest conditions in Australian history" will be in place to protect the reef from harm, including water quality measures and safeguards for the reef plants and animals. (AP Photo/Brain Cassey, File)

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are in the coal business, he said at Nike Air Max Thea Mens the time. you want decent hospitals, schools and police on the beat we all need to understand that. were infuriated by Friday decision, saying that the reef is already vulnerable, having lost huge amounts of coral in recent decades to storm damage and coral eating crown of thorns starfish.

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is natural sand and seabed materials it what already there, Fish said in an interview last month. just relocating it from one spot to another spot, in a like per like situation. Campbell, spokeswoman for the ports corporation, said the group didn anticipate the conditions would cause any delays to the dredging plans.

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The ports corporation CEO Brad Fish has argued that the sediment has been extensively tested for contaminants and was found to be clean.

´╗┐Australian agency OKs plan to dump tons of sediment on Great Barrier Reef

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are devastated. I think any Australian or anyone around the world who cares about the future of the reef is also devastated by this decision, said Richard Leck, reef campaign leader for international conservation group WWF.

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Nike Air Max Thea Mens

agency that oversees Australia Great Barrier Reef on Friday approved a plan to dump vast swathes of sediment on the reef as part of a major coal port expansion a decision that environmentalists say will endanger one of the world most fragile ecosystems.

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granting this permit application with rigorous safeguards, we believe we are able to provide certainty to both the community and the proponent while seeking to ensure transparent and best practice environmental management of the project, Elliot said.

FILE In this undated file photo, a diver swims on Australia Great Barrier Reef. The government agency that oversees Australia Nike Air Max Tavas 40 5

The federal government in December approved the expansion of the Abbot Point coal port in northern Queensland, which requires a massive dredging operation to make way for ships entering and exiting the port. About three million cubic metres of dredged mud will be dumped within the marine park under the plan.

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