Hope Star captain and owner fined for reef rubbish toss

THE captain and owner of the Hope Star bulk carrier have copped a fine after dumping food waste overboard as it travelled through the Great Barrier Reef bound for Gladstone.

The Hope Star Shipping Company was told to pay $5000 and its Chinese master to pay $300 after it dumped garbage about 210km north-east of Gladstone on June 29.

A log book showing the dumping was found on July 6 during an inspection by the Australian Maritime Safety Authority. AMSA then put together a case against the owners and master.

The fines were delivered on November 15 with the magistrate finding the owners and master had broken the Protection of the Sea Act.

According to AMSA, "the magistrate acknowledged the significance of the world- heritage listed Great Barrier Reef Marine Park and the impact such actions can have on the marine life".

The ship returned to Gladstone on September 18, but was not inspected.

Queensland Minister for Environment Andrew Powell was approached for comment, but declined.

Topics:  great barrier reef

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