The recommendations of an inquiry into the impacts of tourism would leave NSW National Parks at risk from development and fossicking, warns Greens MP Jan Barham.
“I am alarmed that the inquiry has recommended allowing the development of tourist accommodation and supporting fossicking within parks. This is a missed opportunity to recognise the importance of reserving pristine natural areas, and the value it contributes to the state’s tourism appeal,” Barham said.
“The NSW Visitor Economy Taskforce’s Action Plan documented that nature and wildlife experiences are a key drawcard for the tourism industry in NSW. We need to maintain the state’s reputation for protecting the natural appeal of NSW.”
Barham noted that building structures in National Parks was unnecessary and undermined the commercial tourism potential for local landholders.
“Aside from the impact of development on the park environment, landowners who are adjacent or near to these protected areas will miss out on opportunities to develop accommodation on private land.”
“Government should reject any activity that would undermine the quality of National Parks and erode the state’s tourism appeal”, she added.
“There is an unfortunate trend for governments, including this NSW Government, to remove protections from our most precious natural areas. I hope the Government sees that this would damage a major source of appeal for visitors, affecting communities and tourist operators across the state, Barham said.
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