ENVIRONMENTALISTS claim the decision to allow continued use of a controversial herbicide will harm the Great Barrier Reef.
Australia's chemical regulator will allow the use of diuron to continue.
World Wildlife Fund (WWF) attacked the decision yesterday, saying it would "result in the continued contamination of our freshwater systems and marine environments".
The Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority (APVMA) has reduced the levels at which diuron can be used.
"The APVMA has again failed to protect the Great Barrier Reef. We call on the minister and the prime minister to intervene and give the APVMA stronger powers and an obligation to ban these dangerous chemicals," WWF spokesperson Nick Heath said.
"What the evidence shows is that diuron is so persistent and unmanageable that it is escaping paddocks and contaminating the Great Barrier Reef, despite efforts by those on the ground to do the right thing and control its use."