The State Government has announced a plan to create five million hectares of new national and marine parks and reserves across Western Australia. This is part of the McGowan Government's whole-of-government target for A Livable Environment, under its Our Priorities: Sharing Prosperity program of targets.
The Plan for Our Parks will see new and expanded parks from the Kimberley in the north, across WA’s Rangelands, through population centres in Perth and Bunbury, to our south-west forests and along our southern coastline. This will create more opportunities for nature-based and cultural tourism, provide enhanced biodiversity conservation and build on Aboriginal joint management throughout Western Australia. The plan will deliver on a number of existing strategic priorities and commitments, and create new, visionary opportunities for parks and reserves.
The Houtman Abrolhos Islands National Park off the Geraldton coast is the first national park to be created under Plan for Our Parks. The addition of former industrial estate (Site L) into Murujuga National Park in the Pilbara has also been completed, marking another significant achievement under Plan for Our Parks.
Update from the Director General - July 2019
Following the Premier’s launch of Plan for Our Parks in February 2019, the State Government has continued to consult with key stakeholders and interest holders, including: traditional owners, conservation groups, the resource sector, commercial and recreational fishers, pastoralists, local government authorities and neighbours. Several hundred stakeholders were contacted and given the opportunity to meet and contribute their feedback, which to date has been very constructive and positive.
Government representatives have hosted over 30 meetings so far, with many more planned for throughout July and August. Consultation is being undertaken through a whole-of-government collaboration including the Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions (DBCA), Department of Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety, Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development, and the Department of Planning, Lands and Heritage.
The focus of the consultation has been on establishing the values, issues and interests associated with visionary opportunities in the Plan. This includes the former pastoral lands acquired by the State for conservation over the past 20 years, as well as opportunities for marine parks on the south coast and metropolitan waters.
Consultation is also continuing for election commitments that are now part of the Plan, including the proposed Fitzroy River National Park and Buccaneer Archipelago Marine Park; expansion of Wellington National Park and for the Ocean to Preston River and Leschenault regional parks.
Creating lasting partnerships with traditional owners is a key outcome of Plan for Our Parks. We have entered a new era of Aboriginal joint management of parks and I am proud the conservation estate is being expanded in a way that will benefit all Western Australians, now and into the future. DBCA has met with a number of traditional owner groups around the State to understand shared interests and issues as well as seeking their support for various reserve proposals. This will continue as the Plan is refined, and through the development of the Indigenous Land Use Agreements that are required to create the parks.
We are still in the early stages of the five-year project and the feedback we receive during consultation will help shape the Plan and the final decisions on parks to be created. The State Government will continue to engage with stakeholders as the parks are created and management approaches are determined.
I’d like to take this opportunity to thank all those that have offered their feedback to date, including:
- Association of Mining and Exploration Companies
- Australian Petroleum Production & Exploration Association
- The Chamber of Minerals and Energy of WA
- Conservation Council of WA
- Environmental Defender’s Office
- Environs Kimberley
- Gondwana Link
- Kimberley Pilbara Cattlemen’s Association
- Outdoors WA
- The Pastoralists and Graziers Association
- Pastoral Lands Board
- Pew Charitable Trusts
- Save Our Marine Life
- Southern Seafood Producers Association
- Tourism Council WA
- WA Fishing Industry Council WA
- Local Government Association Wildflower Society of WA, and many more.
If you are interested in providing feedback, please email email@example.com.
Mark Webb PSM
Working with traditional owners
The expansion plan will build on the State Government’s successful Aboriginal Ranger Program by providing more opportunities for traditional owners to jointly manage country. The creation of new parks and reserves will be subject to endorsement from traditional owners and the finalisation of Indigenous Land Use Agreements.
The consultation timeline outlines the State Government’s comprehensive and ongoing consultation process with Traditional Owners; pastoral, fishing and mining industry; conservation organisations; interest holders and all levels of government. There is flexibility with the design of Plan for Our Parks. Through the consultation process, specific proposals, boundaries and management approaches will be developed. Download the consultation timeline below.
Regions in focus
Plan for Our Parks spans the State, from the Kimberley region in the north to the South Coast. Find out more about the proposed new and expanded parks, including regional maps.
For more information please email firstname.lastname@example.org.