New South Wales’ national parks and regional tourism will both benefit from the passing of the National Parks & Wildlife Amendment (Visitors and Tourists) Bill 2010 through the NSW Parliament in early June 2010, according to peak industry body, Tourism & Transport Forum (TTF).
TTF Executive Director Brett Gale said the legislation further enhances protections for the natural estate.
“This is a sensible move which will help to increase visitation to national parks,” Mr Gale said, “while at the same time protecting them from inappropriate development.”
“It will clarify the types of visitor facilities that are allowed in national parks and further strengthen the restrictions on what tourism activities are acceptable.
“Far from threatening the natural estate, it further enshrines in law vital conservation requirements.
“Only structures of an appropriate type and scale which ‘tread lightly’ are permissible, while a share of profits from any commercial partner will be reinvested in park infrastructure and management.
“Preserving the natural amenity of national parks is crucial to maintaining their desirability to visitors which puts conservation at the forefront of the tourism industry’s considerations.
“The ethos is intrinsically one of conservation and environmental awareness, underwritten by the reality that the natural assets are the primary attraction.
“The tourism industry welcomes the passing of this bill and looks forward to helping the NSW Government achieve its aim of a 20 per cent increase in visitation to national parks by 2016.”