Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli access

Tasmania specific bushwalking discussion.
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Tasmania specific bushwalking discussion. Please avoid publishing details of access to sensitive areas with no tracks.

Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby bogholesbuckethats » Wed 30 Oct, 2019 1:27 pm

lefroy wrote:Would it be possible for someone to record the session? I have prior engagements but would love to hear what is discussed?
I imagine it would be good for interstate walkers to hear first hand what is happening in TAS to make more informed choices on the industries they support when visiting.


I believe it will be recorded as there is a video link to the Wilderness Society building in Launceston. I will ask if the video can be uploaded online so that it can be shared around.
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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby bogholesbuckethats » Mon 04 Nov, 2019 8:05 pm

The following was posted by Greg French on the FlyLife Forum

A COMMUNITY VISIT TO MALBENA IS BEING ORGANISED FOR THE WEEKEND OF SATURDAY 7 DECEMBER AND SUNDAY 8 DECEMBER. IT IS TIMED TO COINCIDE WITH AN OCCUPY HALLS ISLAND PROTEST.

To facilitate this event, the Aboriginal custodians of Gowan Brae have graciously allowed access through their property, so we will be walking the historic route from the WHA boundary via Olive Lagoon, Mary Tarn and Lake Loretta, a distance of about 11 km each way (3–4.5 hours depending upon fitness).

A Direct Action protest is needed straight away because the government is quickly removing your Right to Know, your Right to be Heard and your Rights of Legal Appeal.

The heart of the matter is the way helicopter fly-outs and luxury lodges are being championed by the government despite overwhelming public opposition, but it’s worth summarising the corruption of democracy that got us to this point:

OWNERSHIP OF ISLAND

The owner almost accidentally acquired a historic lease to the hut, and was shocked to find that it applied only to hut’s tiny footprint, a mere 40 m2 of land. So he ingratiated himself with Liberal Party and TICT. It suited the Liberal Party to have what it thought was a tiny uncontroversial project flying under the radar to pave the way for its secretive EOI process, which itself is designed to feather the nests of mates. So the minister decided to gift the developer an entire 10 ha island – our land, not his.

How many of us could hope to be given, free of charge, an entire private island in the middle of a World Heritage national park? What is the monetary value of that gift? How much is an island like that worth on the free market? We’ll never know: by law we’re not allowed to know.

The government was well aware that gifting a large tract of extremely valuable public land to a ‘mate’ would not withstand scrutiny, so it didn’t notify anyone about what it was doing. No public notification. No tendering process. No assessment of any kind.

Such subversion of due process has no place in a functional democracy. It’s corruption, pure and simple.

DEVELOPMENT APPLICATION

The proponent applied for the right to develop the island under the community-endorsed, legally binding plan, and the development was comprehensively rejected.

So the government unilaterally changed the management plan, including its zoning provisions.

The government knew this wouldn’t withstand public scrutiny either, so it tweaked the law such that the only relevant process for assessing the development, the RAA, did not involve public submissions and excluded the right of legal appeal, even when the development violated rules and provisions of the new (supposedly still legally binding) management plan.

The federal assessment process under the EPBC deferred to the RAA, so the submissions it received were effectively dismissed before they were opened. The Development Application (DA) run by the Central Highlands Council resulted in 1343 submissions against the proposal and 3 in favour. Responding to concerns raised in the submissions, the council rejected the DA. The government didn’t like the result, so it appealed the decision, arguing that public consultation shouldn’t have counted for anything because the development had already been approved in the RAA process. Based on legal technicalities (not the merits or otherwise of the proposal) RMPAT more or less agreed. As is stands, the 1343 submissions you wrote against the proposal count for nothing. Legally speaking, you may as well not have written them.

It not an exaggeration to say that our democracy is under threat like never before.

THE FUTURE OF ACCOUNTABILITY

As of next year, all development on public land (including all of the Western Lakes, all national parks, all of the WHA) will be assessed under the Statewide Planning Scheme, and solely via the RAA process.

If the Malbena decision stands, the government can gift part or all of any national park to its mates without notifying the public, with no free-market tendering process and with no legal avenue for appeal, just as it is doing with Halls Island.

Honestly, if this doesn’t scare you to death, you probably don’t really understand what’s at stake.

DIRECT ACTION

The legal fight is still very much a live issue. Still, since the government is hell-bent on removing our Right to Know, our Right to be Heard and our Right of Legal Appeal, we are opting for an early Direct Action ‘taster’.

The idea is to prove to the government that we will not be denied access to our own land, and especially not through corrupt processes designed by a corrupt government simply to feather the nests of it corruptible mates.

Notes on access, camping and etiquette for the Community Visit and Occupy Halls Island protests will posted over the next few days on the FlyLife Forum, the TNPA website, the Wilderness Society website and the FAWAHA Facebook page.

I hope to see you all there.

Let’s give the government and the developer something to think about: a taste of what is to come if the corruption isn’t acknowledged and the island not returned to us.
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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby myrtlegirl » Wed 06 Nov, 2019 10:51 am

I'm likely to be travelling up from Hobart (maybe up on Fri and/or back on Mon?), and I have a vehicle that will take 5 people and their packs comfortably. PM me if you'd like a lift.
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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby Son of a Beach » Wed 06 Nov, 2019 12:43 pm

I've only been into Malbena from another (longer) route. How far do we drive, and where does the actual walking start?

I guess it starts somewhere on that dirt track that starts at the end of Gowan Brae Road and ends just to the east of Johnson's Lagoon?
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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby Paul » Wed 06 Nov, 2019 4:31 pm

Are there any plans to "greet" the overseas team members that will be here for the World Fly Fishing Championships ?
It could be done at the Official Arriving / Opening and also at each venue.
I think it would be a great opportunity to tell the world how corrupt our government is and to let them know how our wilderness is being sold off to private interests.
I will participate.

Also, I will be attending the camping weekend in The Walls Of Jerusalem National Park, at Lake Malbena.

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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby lefroy » Wed 06 Nov, 2019 7:55 pm

I had thought the same Paul, however the people travelling internationally are usually the very people who couldn't give 2 f's about the impact or who else is disadvantaged by these developments. Is that too cynical? I would be up for a bit of noise at the events if you go ahaead
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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby myrtlegirl » Sat 09 Nov, 2019 7:58 am

lefroy wrote:I had thought the same Paul, however the people travelling internationally are usually the very people who couldn't give 2 f's about the impact or who else is disadvantaged by these developments.


I think you're correct about this. It's very, very, worth doing though, as the Government and Tourism folks will find it embarrassing, and the media may pick it up.
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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby Lophophaps » Sat 09 Nov, 2019 2:27 pm

Anything that adds pressure to the government and perhaps diminishes Tasmania's international standing is worth doing. Tourism is major part of Tasmania's economy, so hitting this is useful, will get the message across. The barbarians want to play hardball, fine, I can respond that way. A well designed media campaign is needed at local and international level.
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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby Nuts » Sun 10 Nov, 2019 9:38 am

Need the whole basket of deplorable projects on one boycott list, nobody ever mentioned selling off bits.
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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby lefroy » Tue 12 Nov, 2019 6:25 am

High Court challenge against Malbena verdict due today, cross those fingers...
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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby Son of a Beach » Tue 12 Nov, 2019 2:03 pm

I've just noticed the EDO have a Point to Pinnacle team. So I've joined them.

If I raise my target of $500, I will run the whole thing barefoot this Sunday (probably in the rain/snow by the look of it). So please donate now at:
https://pointtopinnacle19.everydayhero. ... lls-island

The EDO are doing a great job of defending Halls Island, and by extension all of our wilderness areas. Please donate now if you haven't already contributed to the EDO (or even if you have!).
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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby bogholesbuckethats » Tue 12 Nov, 2019 3:28 pm

My (very limited) understanding of the federal court ruling is as follows.

The Wilderness Society won two of the three points and they will have their court costs paid for by the Federal Government.

I believe the proposal does not need to be resubmitted by the proponent but it will need to be reassessed by the Department of the Environment.
I think the wilderness society can impose conditions that need to be agreed upon by both parties.

This was what I could gather from a very short ruling chock full of legal jargon.

The WS and EDO are now going over the 50 or so page ruling and will post about it later today/tomorrow
Last edited by bogholesbuckethats on Tue 12 Nov, 2019 6:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby bushwalker zane » Tue 12 Nov, 2019 5:09 pm

Thanks for the update BHBH! That legal jargon goes over my head unless I'm in a very particular state of mind :lol:
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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby bogholesbuckethats » Tue 12 Nov, 2019 6:22 pm

That looks like a pad.
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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby Brekel » Tue 12 Nov, 2019 8:58 pm

2 minutes in court listening to the decision, quite a few hours going through the decision document!
There's some wording in there that also potentially invalidates the reasons given by the RMPAT tribunal.
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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby Lophophaps » Wed 13 Nov, 2019 5:44 am

There is some hope for our interests. Mistakes seems to have been made at state and Commonwealth levels, enough to justify the action. See this
https://tnpa.org.au/decision-on-wildern ... -decision/
"The original Ministerial decision (formally described as a notice under s 77 of the EPBC Act) concluded that the Halls Island proposal was not a controlled action without requiring any specific mitigation measures to ensure that it did not impact on World Heritage values. i.e. it relied solely on whatever mitigation measures might be required by the Tasmanian government.

"The key point of Justice Mortimer’s decision is that the original notice is to now be set aside and reissued with conditions which are to be negotiated between the Commonwealth and TWS."
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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby Son of a Beach » Wed 13 Nov, 2019 10:38 am

From the FlyLife forums topic at https://flylife.com.au/forum/topic/why- ... ost-857850 comes this interesting tidbit:

Jason Jacobi, General Manager, Parks and Wildlife Service wrote:The commercial lease over the remainder of the island is contingent on the development obtaining all necessary approvals. If those approvals are secured, then the lease affords the operator exclusive use.


So it seems to me as though the developer does NOT (yet) have exclusive use of the island. As approvals have not all been secured as yet.

Can anybody with more legal knowledge shed any further light on this?

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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby Brekel » Wed 13 Nov, 2019 10:58 am

Ahh, that's the relevant info I was asking for in another group and hadn't yet seen.

So after yesterday's decision, the project does not (yet) have EPBC approval.
Without EPBC approval, it also does not have RAA approval (as it was written into that that it could not be approved without EPBC).
So if RAA and EPBC approval have not yet been secured, that letter from DPIPWE seems to state fairly clearly that they do not yet have "exclusive use".

Worst case, that letter from a government department gives you a solid defence if you went there and anyone raised any issues.

PS I'm not a lawyer though
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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby bogholesbuckethats » Wed 13 Nov, 2019 3:20 pm

Parks minister says development opponents are ‘bullies’

The Mercury 13th November

Parks Minister Peter Gutwein has hit back at opponents of the Lake Malbena proposal, who say the approval process for national parks is flawed.

THE process for approving developments inside national parks is flawed and needs to be thrown out and replaced, the Greens say.

But Parks and Environment Minister Peter Gutwein says opponents of the controversial Lake Malbena developments are just being “bullies”.

The comments came after the Federal Court overturned the Federal Government’s environmental assessment of the helicopter-serviced standing camp proposal for Lake Malbena, in the state’s central highlands.

The court on Tuesday found the Federal Environment Minister had wrongly decided it did not need to assess the development it deemed “not a controlled action”.

The judgment also said the state’s Reserve Activity Assessment process, which is used by the Parks and Wildlife Service to assess tourism proposals, had “no apparent statutory basis”.


Ms O’Connor said the process of approving developments in national parks in Tasmania was flawed.

“This mess was created by the Liberals in government. They politicised the Parks and Wildlife Service, so that it’s bending over backwards to progress developments to enable the work of proponents,” she said.

“What we’ve got here is developments being approved through a process which has been slammed by the federal court as a non-statutory process.

“The Liberals are approving developments through reserve activity assessments, which are written in secret, inside Parks, largely written by proponents themselves.”

Ms O’Connor says the reserve activity assessments were at the heart of a flawed process.

“The reason that the Federal Government decided not to have a look at the impact on wilderness values or Aboriginal cultural heritage values is because Parks and Wildlife under the Liberals stitched up a reserve activity assessment which told the Federal Government, everything would be fine.

“Everything is not fine. It was a flawed decision.”

Parks and Environment Minister Peter Gutwein rejected the Greens’ characterisation of the court decision.

“What the judgment does, in simple terms, is it simply sets aside the current federal decision to allows the parties to actually negotiate on the conditions that were brought forward voluntarily by the proponent in first place,” he said.

He said opponents were “bullying” the developers.

“They want to have a full-frontal attack on a young Tasmanian family [who] is doing its best to establish a world-class tourism venture that will create job and opportunity for Tasmania.”

“Let me put some facts on the table first and foremost.

“Halls Island has had a lease on it for a long period of time. It is not pristine wilderness – it sits within pristine wilderness, but Halls Island is not.”
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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby stepbystep » Thu 14 Nov, 2019 6:17 am

The FAWAHA response.

Want to support them? Follow on Facebook and/or Twitter. All walkers are needed.
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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby farefam » Thu 14 Nov, 2019 10:30 pm

The media release sums it up perfectly.
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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby taswegian » Fri 15 Nov, 2019 8:28 am

I'm not a fly fisher but wonder how much fly fishing can be had from the shores of the island?
How does one fly fish there? Just curious.
Are there enough fish to satisfy his high paying and expectant tourists?

I hope this gets rolled and Mr Fly Fisher loses his lease.
$1. Is that correct that he pays that much?
If it's so good for the economy the government are missing out badly. All that lost revenue for state coffers :shock:
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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby north-north-west » Fri 15 Nov, 2019 9:03 am

taswegian wrote:I'm not a fly fisher but wonder how much fly fishing can be had from the shores of the island?
How does one fly fish there?


I've only visited a little of the southern edge of Malbena, but there is a fair bit of flattish and relatively unvegetated ground there (rock slabs and the like). One could fish from the shore or by wading. Or from a packraft. But the island itself - don't know. Aerials show shallower areas on some shores where waders would probably work.
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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby Son of a Beach » Fri 15 Nov, 2019 9:28 am

When launching our boats on from the North shore of Halls Island, we found it was quite steep (and the water very deep) at the spot we scrambled down. However, there are a few flatter spots around the island with plenty of space for fluff-chucking. The other smaller islands to the north west of Halls have some flat/shallow areas and would therefore be good for fluff-chuckers.

Having said all that, I've no idea if there are decent fish in the lake. We didn't see any, but then I'm not a fisher and my mate (who is a keen fly fisher) didn't have time/energy for it after/before long days of paddling/scrub-bashing.

(One last plug... If I raise my target of $500 towards EDO's fight for Halls Island, I will attempt to run the Point to Pinnacle half-marathon barefoot this Sunday.
So please donate now at: https://pointtopinnacle19.everydayhero. ... lls-island )
...and if I don't make the target I will attempt to run it barefoot anyhow... but just donate for Halls Island!
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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby Nuts » Fri 15 Nov, 2019 9:49 am

I'd imagined a base for other lakes, access tracks like the other private huts.
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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby north-north-west » Fri 15 Nov, 2019 10:19 am

Son of a Beach wrote:Having said all that, I've no idea if there are decent fish in the lake. We didn't see any, but then I'm not a fisher and my mate (who is a keen fly fisher) didn't have time/energy for it after/before long days of paddling/scrub-bashing.


I was about to say that surely they wouldn't even begin with this proposal if they weren't sure there were enough fish to make it viable and attractive to their target consumer base.
Then I remembered with whom we are dealing... :roll:
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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby Mechanic-AL » Fri 15 Nov, 2019 10:31 am

I reckon when the exclusive elite fisher folk come blurting in on a whirly bird there'll probably be a poly-styrene box in the back of the chopper filled with trout. Each with its own bar code and invoice number of the clients up the front so when these intrepid adventurers hook the fish of their dreams they can get a framed portrait of their "wild caught Tasmanian trout'. ( for a small additional fee ).
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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby taswegian » Fri 15 Nov, 2019 10:55 am

Mechanic-Al that and other comment is at the heart of my query.
If I proposed to survey off 1 ha to grow strawberries on the side of Mt Owen I'd have to justify amongst other things, the viability of such a venture.
It could tick the right boxes in several areas but if it wasn't viable or agriculturally possible then I'd be denied.
I query the viability of this.

But then fishing doesn't always involve actually catching fish, and that's where the dilemma starts.
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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby Rexyviney36 » Fri 15 Nov, 2019 5:06 pm

Lake Malbena has “superb silvery browns to 1.5kgs...” for lure casters, but for fly fishers “by the standards set at many nearby waters...the fishing is generally poor.” (Greg French, Tasmanian Trout Waters, 2002 ed)
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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby Nuts » Sun 17 Nov, 2019 8:19 am

An annual fish-a-thon should sort those ones out. Gone! They are a feral animal, here in a Wwha.
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