How Bob Carr voted compared to someone who believes that the federal government should make laws and regulations that protect and conserve the health of the Great Barrier Reef for future generations

Division Bob Carr Supporters vote Division outcome

17th Jun 2013, 3:57 PM – Senate Motions - Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area - Maintain heritage status

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The majority voted against a motion moved by Greens Senator Larissa Waters, which was:

That the Senate-

(a) notes:

(i) the World Heritage Committee's draft decision on the Great Barrier Reef states that to avoid the reef being added to the World Heritage in Danger list, Australia must turn around the 'limited progress' to date, and take 'urgent and decisive' action on its earlier recommendations to prevent new ports in pristine areas, and reject damaging port expansions,

(ii) the World Heritage Committee specifically identifies That the Fitzroy Delta, including Port Alma and Balaclava Island, should not be developed,

(iii) that Queensland's draft Ports Strategy considers Port Alma and Balaclava Island part of the Gladstone Port available for development, and

(iv) that Glencore Xstrata has just withdrawn its plans to develop a major coal port on pristine Balaclava Island; and

(b) calls on the Government to:

(i) implement the World Heritage Committee's recommendations regarding ports immediately so that Australia does not become the only developed country with a site on the World Heritage in Danger list, and

(ii) immediately rule out any industrial development in the Fitzroy Delta and reflect this in our national environment laws.

absent Yes (strong) Not passed by a modest majority

29th Oct 2012, 3:45 PM – Senate Motions - Nationally Threatened Species and Wilderness Areas - Federal responsibility

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Motion text

That the Senate—

(a) notes:

(i) the Australian Institute of Marine Sciences study released on 2 October 2012 which found that the Great Barrier Reef has lost more than half its coral cover in the past 27 years, and that, if current trends continue, coral cover could halve again by 2022,

(ii) the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation report of 1 October 2012 which stated that ecological change across Australia in response to climate change is unavoidable; it will be widespread and substantial,

(iii) the Australian Bureau of Statistics Measures of Australia's Progress 2012 report released on 9 October 2012 which highlighted that we are failing to stop the decline in our biodiversity and our atmosphere, and

(iv) the Government's commitment to hand federal environmental responsibility for threatened and migratory species, Ramsar wetlands and heritage spaces to the states despite the likely damage to the nationally important places and species Australians consider too precious to lose; and

(b) calls on the Government to retain responsibility for making all major decisions on environmentally damaging projects that affect our nationally threatened species and wilderness places.

absent Yes Not passed by a modest majority

10th Oct 2012, 3:55 PM – Senate Documents - Reef Rescue Program - Great Barrier Reef

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Motion text

That the Senate—

(a) notes the Australian Institute of Marine Sciences study released on 2 October 2012, which found that:

(i) the Great Barrier Reef has lost more than half its coral cover in the past 27 years, and that if current trends continue coral cover could halve again by 2022,

(ii) this loss was due to storm damage (48 per cent), crown of thorns starfish (42 per cent) and bleaching (10 per cent), and

(iii) improving water quality is critical to reducing the huge damage caused by frequent outbreaks of the crown of thorns starfish; and

(b) calls on the Federal Government to finally commit to renewing the Reef Rescue program for another 5 years with at least another $200 million in funding, to assist Queensland farmers to continue to reduce agricultural run-off into the Great Barrier Reef.

No Yes Not passed by a modest majority

11th Sep 2012, 4:02 PM – Senate Documents - Great Barrier Reef - Federal responsibility

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Motion text

That the Senate—

(a) notes:

(i) the intention of the Minister for Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities (Mr Burke) to transfer responsibility for protecting our nationally threatened species and wilderness places to state governments by March 2013, and

(ii) that the Queensland Premier (Mr Newman) is ready to sacrifice the Great Barrier Reef for mining and development; and

(b) calls on the Government to retain responsibility for all major decisions on environmentally damaging projects that affect our nationally threatened species and wilderness places.

absent Yes Not passed by a modest majority

22nd Mar 2012, 1:56 PM – Senate Motions - Great Barrier Reef - Oppose offshore dumping

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The majority voted against a motion introduced by Greens Senator Larissa Waters, what was:

That the Senate-

(a)   notes that:

(i)   a recent Galaxy poll found 88 per cent of Queenslanders oppose offshore dumping of dredge spoil in the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area, and

(ii)   the Government has approved offshore dumping of over 22 million cubic metres of dredge spoil in the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area in the past 5 years; and

(b)   calls on the Government to stop approving offshore dumping in the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area.

absent Yes Not passed by a modest majority

22nd Mar 2012, 1:53 PM – Senate Motions - Mining - Moratorium on coal seam gas

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The majority voted against a motion introduced by Greens Senator Larissa Waters, which was:

That the Senate-

(a)   notes that in the past 6 months since the Greens motion for a moratorium on coal seam gas mining was first defeated in the Senate, the urgent concerns of farmers, landholders and regional communities regarding the risks posed by the runaway coal seam gas industry have not been addressed;

(b)   notes that the recent Senate inquiry into the impacts of coal seam gas mining in the Murray Darling Basin heard compelling evidence that regional communities are suffering many negative impacts from the operations of coal seam gas mining companies; and

(c)   calls on the Government to implement an immediate moratorium on any new coal seam gas approvals until the long-term impacts of the industry on groundwater, agriculture, rural communities, threatened species, the climate and the Great Barrier Reef are known.

absent Yes Not passed by a modest majority

How "voted a mixture of for and against" is worked out

The MP's votes count towards a weighted average where the most important votes get 50 points, less important votes get 10 points, and less important votes for which the MP was absent get 2 points. In important votes the MP gets awarded the full 50 points for voting the same as the policy, 0 points for voting against the policy, and 25 points for not voting. In less important votes, the MP gets 10 points for voting with the policy, 0 points for voting against, and 1 (out of 2) if absent.

Then, the number gets converted to a simple english language phrase based on the range of values it's within.

No of votes Points Out of
Most important votes (50 points)      
MP voted with policy 0 0 0
MP voted against policy 0 0 0
MP absent 1 25 50
Less important votes (10 points)      
MP voted with policy 0 0 0
MP voted against policy 1 0 10
Less important absentees (2 points)      
MP absent* 4 4 8
Total: 29 68

*Pressure of other work means MPs or Senators are not always available to vote – it does not always indicate they have abstained. Therefore, being absent on a less important vote makes a disproportionatly small difference.

Agreement score = MP's points / total points = 29 / 68 = 43%.

And then