Stop private development within Queensland's National Parks

Stop private development within Queensland's National Parks

0 have signed. Let’s get to 15,000!
At 15,000 signatures, this petition becomes one of the top signed on Change.org!
Greg Wood started this petition to Meaghan Scanlon - Qld Minister for Environment and Science

The Queensland Government is acting to promote private land leasing and development of private luxury accommodation within the State’s National Parks. It is making this huge change to the use and the purpose of our National Parks without any public consultation upon that significant change.
  
Cooloola National Park, between Noosa and K’gari (Fraser Island), is under immediate threat of having 5 sites leased and developed for private use. These sites include some of the most ecologically sensitive and socially important locations within the Park. They include Poona Lake, Double Island Point and alongside the Noosa River near campsite 3.
 
Visit www.protectparks.net to see information on the proposed development and its impacts.
 
Two of the proposed development sites have been selected for their immense natural beauty despite the distinctly evident impacts the development would inflict upon the highly sensitive ecological and aesthetic values of those sites. Another, at Double Island Point, is chosen for its spectacular location and outlook. This choice does not consider the plainly evident threat of impact upon public access and equity.
 
These site choices seek to add commercial value to the private tourist product without due regard to the significant impacts created. This sacrifices nature and public equity within our National Parks to the demands of private commerce. The precedent would be a fatal direction for the purpose and use of our National Parks.
 
Less than 5% of Queensland is protected under National Park status. This is the only land designation that places the protection of biodiversity and ecological process securely above the demands and impact of economic development and commerce. This extent of protection is meagre given its crucial role in preserving species and the ecological processes that maintain climate stability.
 
Our commitment should be to assist National Park capacity to better protect nature.
Instead Government is seeking to throw these last intact natural remnants open to private ownership, construction and business. In the face of accelerating rates of species extinction and climate change such imposition upon already inadequate ecological protection is both wrong and reckless. Effectively it asset-strips the last remnants of our ecological inventory to yet further extend the range of private commercial entitlements.
 
Basic market economics instructs that the increasing rarity of intact natural beauty will increase its market value to those who can pay for it.  Nature’s critical value to local and global wellbeing is not factored in that crass equation. As per that equation, this proposed luxury accommodation is not for everyone. At $600-$1000 per night this project also heralds the beginning of allocating access to our shrinking remnants of natural beauty to the ‘most important people’, as measured by their bank accounts.

The Qld. Dept. of Tourism is driving these un-consulted plans within our National Parks. This dominating influence directly conflicts with the public interest function of National Parks being primarily committed to the effective protection of biodiversity and ecological process. Would a 'Dept. Of Tourism and National Parks' be appropriate or acceptable? No? Then let's stop it from happening, now!

A range of measures are needed to keep our National Parks in good shape, both to protect nature, and to also equitably provide for the needs of everyday people seeking equitable benefit from vibrant, ecologically healthy natural landscapes. These measure are listed on the ‘Protect Parks’ page linked in the top menu bar of www.protectparks.net 
 
The first step is to stop this privatisation threat, and the spectrum of damage it threatens upon ecology and public equity.  
Accordingly this petition calls for National Parks to be kept free from:
1.    All non-essential built infrastructure.
2.    Any commercial activities that require built infrastructure. 
3.    Any new accommodation precinct, structure, or service.
4.    Any proposal that segregates members of the community based on their financial position.
 
The petition supports:
1.     First Nations self-determination within all National Parks and Recreation Areas by way of Indigenous management and rangers programs, connection to country via open access and support for cultural practises, and all avenues of engagement that do not involve liquidation of ecological assets for commercial gain.
2.     A broad-based, genuinely inclusive community engagement upon the fundamental purpose and function of ‘Protected Areas’, and to consider the most equitable and productive means for pursuing the identified priorities.
 

0 have signed. Let’s get to 15,000!
At 15,000 signatures, this petition becomes one of the top signed on Change.org!