McCalman, I. (2017). Linking the local and the global. What today’s environmental humanities movement can learn from their predecessors successful leadership of the 1965-1975 war to save the Great Barrier Reef. Humanities (online),6(4), 1-12. Switzerland: M D P I AG. Retrieved from https://doi.org/10.3390/h6040077
For a decade from 1965–1975, an Australian poet, Judith Wright, and a Reef artist, John Busst, played a major role in helping to save the Great Barrier Reef. The Queensland State Government had declared its intention of mining up to eighty percent of the Reef’s corals for oil, gas, fertiliser and cement. The campaign of resistance led by these two humanists, in alliance with a forester, Dr. Len Webb, contributed substantively to the establishment of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park in 1975 and to then to the Reef’s World Heritage listing in 1983 as ‘the most impressive marine environment in the world’. This paper explains the challenges facing today’s environmental scholars and activists as they attempt to replicate the success of their 1970s predecessors in helping to save the Great Barrier Reef from even graver and more immediate threats to its survival.
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