Fight for the Reef
Fight for the Reef


Apr 10, 2017A
Image: coal spill from Abbot Point into the Caley Valley Wetlands, 1 April 2017 © Google Earth™

Image: coal spill from Abbot Point into the Caley Valley Wetlands, 1 April 2017 © Google Earth™


High resolution satellite photos of pollution, Abbot Point and more available on Dropbox

The Australian Marine Conservation Society (AMCS) is calling for Malcolm Turnbull to cancel meetings with Adani in India this week as their Abbot Point Coal Terminal spills coal into the Great Barrier Reef area – and reject Adani’s coral-killing Carmichael Coal Mine project.

While Malcolm Turnbull courts Adani’s business, meeting with executives to talk about a potential $1 billion loan, Queensland Government satellite images have revealed a severe coal spill from Adani’s Abbot Point Coal Terminal into the Caley Valley Wetlands in the wake of Cyclone Debbie.

Not only will this coal dust smother the wetlands, but there is concern that Adani’s stormwater systems won’t cope with current levels of coal, putting our Reef at further risk if the Terminal is expanded. Coal dust kills coral in high concentrations and any spills would compound pressures on our already stressed Reef, already suffering from two back-to-back years of severe coral bleaching.

“Adani’s current facilities are clearly inadequate to withstand Queensland’s existing weather,” says AMCS Great Barrier Reef Campaigner, Dr Lissa Schindler. “It is alarming that the Port’s storm-water facilities, which have been recently updated, could not handle this cyclone event – in a cyclone-prone region. It is reckless to allow Adani’s Carmichael Coal Mine to go ahead and permit the Port of Abbot Point to double in size. This is a disaster-in-waiting, especially given that severe weather events like this will increase and amplify as climate change worsens.”

“The Caley Valley wetlands at Abbot Point are both nationally and internationally important as they provide breeding and roosting habitats for over 40,000 waterbirds, including 10 threatened species of waterbirds and migratory shorebirds,” says Dr Schindler. “This is an environmental disaster for the Wetlands and another severe blow for the Reef, which is already struggling from coral bleaching and poor water quality.”

“Adani also has a highly dangerous track record on both environmental destruction and human rights. India’s former Environment Minister Mr Jairam Ramesh has said that Mr Adani has not complied with regulations in his own country – and so cannot be expected to comply with regulations in another country.

”It’s sickening that – instead of taking urgent action to stop this mine and protect our wonderful Aussie jewel – our Prime Minister is overseas courting a dangerous foreign company to build the world’s biggest ever coal mine. Adani is a company that is well known to have caused environmental devastation overseas – and we cannot trust them with our Reef.”

For more information go to

High res images available to download on Dropbox here.

For further information, high res images and video, contact AMCS on:                                                                                           

Media and Communications – +61 (0) 412 505 405 –


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