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4th May - Coral Sea for National Heritage, a nomination in limbo      



4th May 2017

With commemorations for the 75th anniversary of the Battle of the Coral Sea taking place, Humane Society International calls for the Coral Sea to be listed as a National Heritage place for its rich natural and cultural heritage.

Humane Society International, along with several other conservation organisations, nominated the Coral Sea for a National Heritage Listing in 2010 and the Federal Environment Minister has repeatedly deferred decisions. The current deadline for an Australian Heritage Council decision is June 2017.

Humane Society International sent a reminder about the National Heritage nomination to the Prime Minister's office ahead of his trip to the United States this weekend.

"A National Heritage Listing in 2017 would be a very fitting way to commemorate the Battle of the Coral Sea,” said Nicola Beynon, Humane Society International Head of Campaigns in Australia.

The nomination documents the cultural and military history of the Coral Sea which hosted the momentous battle that turned the tide of World War II. It also sets out the Coral Sea's natural heritage with its coral reefs, sandy cays, abyssal plains, deep sea mountains and canyons, which play host to a spectacular array of wildlife.

"We look forward to hearing whether this important heritage nomination is finally receiving the attention it so richly deserves,” said Ms Beynon.

The heritage nomination covers the Coral Sea within Australia's jurisdiction which is an area of approximately 1,000,000 square kilometres northeast of Queensland. It includes Heralds Beacon Island, Osprey Reef, the Willis Group and 15 other reef and island groups, in addition to the Coringa-Herald and Lihou Reef National Nature Reserves.

The Battle of the Coral Sea was fought from May 4 to 8, 1942.

"A National Heritage Listing would give Australian federal environment ministers responsibility for protecting the natural and cultural historical values of the Coral Sea for generations to come,” concluded Ms Beynon.


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