Australian government reaches a 39.3 million Australian dollar ($29.6 million) settlement with the owners of a Chinese ship for environmental damage caused to the Great Barrier Reef

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“China risks becoming a pariah nation because of its overfishing, illegal fishing and damage to the global ocean environments….”

MV Shen Neng 1 aground, April 2010

By ROD MCGUIRK, The Associated Press

CANBERRA, Australia — Sep 19, 2016, 6:33 AM ET

The Australian government reached a 39.3 million Australian dollar ($29.6 million) settlement with the owners of a Chinese coal carrier to pay for environmental damage caused when the ship ran aground on the Great Barrier Reef six year ago, the environment minister said Monday.

The government had sued Shenzhen Energy Transport for at least AU$120 million in Australian Federal Court after the fully laden ship Shen Neng1 went off course in April 2010 and grounded on Douglas Shoal, 100 kilometers (60 miles) east of the town of Rockhampton, among the chain of World Heritage-listed coral reefs.

Environment Minister Josh Frydenberg said Shenzhen Energy Transport has agreed to the out-of-court-settlement after refusing to accept responsibility for restitution for more than six years.

“Our ongoing actions to pursue funds to clean up the pollution sends an unambiguous signal that damage to the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area is unacceptable and that we will use every available means to pursue ship owners who are negligent in causing damage to the reef,” Frydenberg said in a statement.

The crash site was contaminated with hundreds of kilograms (pounds) of paint particles tainted with the highly toxic anti-fouling agent tributyltin.

Tributyltin slows the growth of aquatic organisms on ship hulls, and marine biologists say the particles need to be removed from the 40-hectare (100-acre) crash site to allow the area to recover.

Shenzhen Energy Transport had said in court the reef is already healing and the company should not have to pay for a cleanup that is not needed.

Shenzhen Energy Transport’s maritime insurer, London P&I Club, has said the government’s estimated costs of fixing the reef were unrealistic.

Frydenberg said the cleanup is likely to begin in mid 2017. Of the total, AU$35 million is to be paid to the government to cover the cost of removing polluted rubble. The remaining AU$4.3 million is to cover government costs incurred in the immediate aftermath of the grounding.

Shenzhen Energy Transport could not be contacted immediately for comment Monday.

Related:

The Federal Court heard that the crash site was contaminated with hundreds of kilograms (pounds) of paint particles tainted with the highly-toxic, anti-fouling agent tributyltin.

Tributyltin slows the growth of aquatic organisms on ship hulls, and marine biologists say the particles need to be removed from the 40-hectare (100-acre) crash site to allow the area to recover.

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Great Barrier Reef — Douglas Shoals area of Australia’s Great Barrier Reef, damaged by the Chinese bulk coal-carrying ship Sheng Neng 1. Photo by Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority, HO

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China dredger Tian Jing Hao. Dozens of dredges like this have been and are being used in China’s environmental rape of the South China Sea and island building.

Reef debris after destruction by a Chinese super dredge

 (This    article has links to several  others related to environmental issues in the South China Sea).

A green sea turtle is seen off the coast of Oahu, Hawaii.

A green sea turtle.(Reuters)

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 (Includes Obama creates largest ocean reserve, takes heat for new federal decrees)

 (Has links to many related conservation and environmental articles)

 (Rupert Wingfield-Hayes reports)

Chinese coast guard ship

 (August 25, 2016)

 (Contains links to several related articles)

An elderly Vietnamese protester holds a placard during an anti-China protest in front of the Chinese consulate in the financial district of Manila on May 16, 2014. Several hundred Filipino and Vietnamese protesters united in a march in the Philippine capital on May 16, demanding that China stop oil drilling in disputed South China Sea waters. Many Vietnamese remain uneasy with China in the South china sea till this day.  AFP PHOTO/TED ALJIBE (Photo credit should read TED ALJIBE/AFP/Getty Images)

 

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Half Great Barrier Reef coral 'dead or dying'
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This undated handout photo released on April 20, 2016 by XL Catlin Seaview Survey shows a turtle swimming over bleached coral at Heron Island onthe Great Barrier Reef. (STR / XL CATLIN SEAVIEW SURVEY / AFP
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Half Great Barrier Reef coral 'dead or dying'

XL Catlin Seaview Survey shows a diver checking the bleached coral at Heron Island on the Great Barrier Reef. (Photo / AFP)

See also:

http://www.chinadailyasia.com/asia/2016-04/28/content_15424636.html

 A diver explores the coral reef at Similan island, Phang-nga, Thailand.
 
 Australia’s Great barrier reef showing coral bleaching near Lizard Island off the coast of Queensland
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 Sea coral in Hong Kong waters. SCMP photo by Eric Keung
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One Response to “Australian government reaches a 39.3 million Australian dollar ($29.6 million) settlement with the owners of a Chinese ship for environmental damage caused to the Great Barrier Reef”

  1. daveyone1 Says:

    Reblogged this on World Peace Forum.

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