LETTER to the Editor - Reef science

LETTER to the Editor - Reef science

Reef science questions concern farmers

Sugarcane growers up and down the Queensland coast are concerned about the questions around the integrity of some of the scientific work done in relation to the health of the Great Barrier Reef.

Science, we have been assured, underpins government policy and strategy, both State and Federal, around the Reef.

These policies have direct impacts on CANEGROWERS members – in their day to day farming operations and in the long-term development of their businesses.

Our sugarcane growing industry is one of innovation and change. Our members have invested millions of dollars of their own money to work towards environmental goals and targets while also still pursuing the productivity gains which keep our export product world competitive.

Now, with a court case looming between James Cook University and one of its own professors, Peter Ridd, amid claims of censorship and allegations of flawed scientific process, the industry is understandably uneasy.

That Professor Ridd’s plea for donations to fund his legal bill has raised in excess of $100,000 in a few days is evidence of the community concern around this issue.

The sugarcane industry urgently needs to be reassured of the scientific rigour surrounding the work on which government Reef policy is based and that the work has the confidence of the organisations and individuals responsible for publishing it.

Dan Galligan

9 February 2018