8 October 2020

AgForce is urging regional Queenslanders to get involved in the Forum titled “Checks and balances around Great Barrier Reef marine science and the 2017 Scientific Consensus Statement” being held on Thursday 8 October at 4.30pm AEST, to gain an insight into why the unchecked science that the ridiculous, ineffective, greenie-inspired laws are based on will destroy farmers, industries and communities.

The Forum has been organised by the Pioneer Cane Growers Organisation and is strongly supported by AgForce and other grower groups to facilitate public debate around Reef science and legislation.

Also in focus, will be the poor quality assurance standards, the over-reliance on modelling and ‘selective agenda-driven assumptions and conclusions underpinning the State Government’s draconian Reef regulations and standards.

The CEO of the Australian Institute of Marine Science (AIMS) Dr Paul Hardisty and Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority (GBRMPA) had been invited to debate the Science with eminent reef scientist Dr Peter Ridd but both institutions formally declined the offer.

It is not surprising, after both institutions were hammered by relentless questioning at the recent Senate Inquiry which resulted in embarrassing admissions including: that it was probably misleading to call the Scientific Consensus Statement a ‘consensus’; that the inshore reefs are the ones that are mostly affected by water quality and they represent only 3.3% of the coral on the Great Barrier Reef; that the Inshore Reefs were at low to negligible risk from pesticides; and that coral reef growth rates, as measured by Porites corals, are not connected to farm practices.

Dr Ridd is foremost among a significant and growing group of marine scientists questioning AIMS and other scientific organisations’ research and analysis and the regulations based on them.

AgForce’s Cane President Ricky Mio encouraged everyone who valued a fair go for farmers to participate in the event.

“AgForce and other producer and community groups have for years questioned not just the effectiveness but the need for regulations like those imposed by the State Government.”

“We are extremely sceptical of the motivation behind the current regulatory framework, which is not based on proven, quality-assured science, but on pseudo-science, theoretical models, and Green-inspired dogma.

“So, that is why we joined other farming advocacy groups and senators in challenging AIMS and GBRMPA to publicly explain and defend their research and assumptions on Reef health this week.

“We believe it is a critical topic to discuss as Queensland decides who should lead us at the end of this month.

“The more people who take part in the discussion will add weight to our concerns and – hopefully – force the pollies to listen and to act.”

Mr Mio said he welcomed the decision by organisers to proceed with a Forum in the absence of AIMS and GBRMPA, as Queenslanders deserved to know the truth about the health of the GBR.

The issue was too important to wait for AIMS and GBRMPA to agree to meet especially as AgForce, Dr Ridd and Property Rights Australia had been calling for a meeting with AIMS since February this year, but we were continually fobbed off.

To keep up to date with the “Checks and balances around Great Barrier Reef marine science and the 2017 Scientific Consensus Statement and other important issues, head to AgForce’s Stand With Regional Queensland Facebook page and click on ‘Like’.


Media contact: David Vogler 0418 733 102