Turtle’s Great Barrier Reef swim caught on camera

1 Jul 2015

A mesmerising video of a turtle swimming the Great Barrier Reef with a Go Pro on its back has fascinated the internet on the same day UNESCO voted to not include the reef on its world ‘in danger’ list.

The camera was attached to the back of the turtle before it was released into the wild as part of an initiative by WWF Australia to highlight the issues pollution is causing to animals, such as turtles, that inhabit the Great Barrier Reef.

And it looks pretty cool…

While the Reef did avoid being put on the ‘in danger’ list, it will remain on UNESCO’s ‘watch list’ for another four years, according to the ABC.

Australia will be required to provide an update on the reef’s health by the end of next year, and significant improvements are required to be made by 2020 or the reef will once again be in danger of facing an ‘in danger’ listing.

Australia’s Environment Minister Greg Hunt told the UN committee that Australia is committed to improving the health of the reef and that it had committed an additional AU$8m for reef monitoring.

The Great Barrier Reef is one of the seven natural wonders of the world, it is visited by more than 2m tourists annually and generates revenue of between AU$5-6m.

Factors such as climate change, pollution and industrialisation have threatened the reef in recent years, leading to the calls from organisations like the WWF Australia for greater protection of what is the world’s largest marine park.

If it had been placed on the ‘in danger’ list the reef would have been in danger of losing its UNESCO World Heritage Site status.

Main turtle image via Shutterstock

Brigid O Gorman is a former sub-editor of Silicon Republic.