Ships dumping garbage on the Great Barrier reef

Date: 1/2/2005

International ships are illegally polluting the Great Barrier Reef by dumping garbage and oily bilge water into the sensitive area, prompting a crackdown by federal authorities. Three foreign ship owners are before the courts and a further five are under investigation after allegedly being caught by routine checks of their logs at their Australian ports of call. Foodwaste, crockery, packaging and oily waste are among garbage thrown overboard by cargo ships travelling on the busy international shipping lane through the reef and Torres Strait, according to the Australian Maritime Safety.

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