With the explosion of tourism in the 1940s and problems resulting from overfishing, limestone mining and oil drilling, the Australian government decided to designate the reef as a marine park in 1975. The park was divided into various zones that determined the type of activities that were permitted.
Managed by the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority, the park includes other communities in addition to the reefs, such as ocean troughs, estuaries and mangroves. Today, the park includes 70 different habitats, each of which has a designated "no-take" zone, which means that visitors can remove nothing from the environment. This effectively restricts all recreational activities in nearly one-third of the park.
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