THREE Greenpeace protestors have been charged with one count each of wilful damage and posess graffiti instruments after painting "reef in danger" on the side a ship moored near the RG Tanna Coal Terminal this morning.
Greenpeace Australia Pacific media spokesperson Julie Macken said she and seven other protesters went out into the harbour in two inflatable boats armed with paint where one of the protesters left the message on the side of coal ship the Panamanian.
However Ms Macken said on their way back to shore they were intercepted by police.
A police media spokesperson said the a 30-year-old woman, a 53-year-old man and a 32-year-old woman were charged for the offence.
Ms Macken said the reason behind leaving the message was the fact that UNESCO was due to visit today and was also in the hops of inspiring other Austrlians to fight for the health of the Great Barrier Reef.
"1700 ships are cutting through the barrier reef every year.
"By the time development is complete there will be 10,000," Ms Macken said.
"Our concerns are obviously the impact that is going to have on the Great Barrier Reef."
All of the protestors are set to appear in Gladstone Magistrates Court at a later date.