Release type: Joint Media Release


Research to protect and preserve the Great Barrier Reef


The Hon Dan Tehan MP
Minister for Education
The Hon Karen Andrews MP
Minister for Industry, Science and Technology
Mr George Christensen MP
Member for Dawson

North Queensland’s iconic Great Barrier Reef will be better protected thanks to the Morrison Government’s investment in a $36.3 million research facility near Townsville.

In this year’s Budget the Government provided funding to expand the National Sea Simulator (SeaSim), a specially designed facility for climate related coral reef research.

Member for Dawson George Christensen said research conducted at SeaSim would help protect and preserve the Great Barrier Reef for all Queenslanders, tourists and future generations.

“SeaSim is a unique, world-class research aquarium for tropical marine organisms that allows researchers to control and manipulate conditions not feasible in the field,” Mr Christensen said.

“Protecting the Great Barrier Reef is a priority issue for our Government.

“The Morrison Government’s $36.3 million investment will fund an expansion to increase the capacity of SeaSim’s large tank systems by five-fold and associated physical containment and culture laboratories.”

Minister for Education Dan Tehan said the Government was investing in Australia’s researchers to tackle the problems that will improve our lives, grow our economy and generate new knowledge.

“In this year’s Budget, our Government provided an additional $1 billion for university research and $157 million for research infrastructure to support our smartest minds to continue their work in the national interest,” Mr Tehan said.

“Our Government is investing in research that’s in the national interest and we have a plan to turn that research into jobs, productivity gains and economic growth as part of our economic recovery from COVID-19.”

Minister for Industry, Science and Technology Karen Andrews said SeaSim is a world-class facility in high demand.

“Facilities like this demonstrate the importance of our research infrastructure to the work of Australia’s amazing scientists and researchers,” Minister Andrews said.

“This investment will not only lead to further scientific discoveries, but also provide economic benefits to the region by supporting local business and creating jobs, especially in the agriculture and tourism sectors.”

More information about Australia’s National Research Infrastructure Investment Plan is available at