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 L_Cham_67 » Fri 13 Dec, 2019 9:41 am

The State Government has released a "Towards a Tourism Master Plan" document. Public consultation on a draft document will be sought in March 2020.

https://dpipwe.tas.gov.au/Documents/Tow ... 0TWWHA.pdf

Strategic Principle 5 (on page 35) seems highly relevant for Lake Malbena. It talks about how essential it is for tourism proposals to not disenfranchise local communities, or have a detrimental effect on the TWWHA. :lol:
And on page 51, they acknowledge that helicopter access was a "significant theme in the initial engagement process".
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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby stepbystep » Fri 13 Dec, 2019 10:31 am

L_Cham_67 wrote:The State Government has released a "Towards a Tourism Master Plan" document. Public consultation on a draft document will be sought in March 2020.

https://dpipwe.tas.gov.au/Documents/Tow ... 0TWWHA.pdf

Strategic Principle 5 (on page 35) seems highly relevant for Lake Malbena. It talks about how essential it is for tourism proposals to not disenfranchise local communities, or have a detrimental effect on the TWWHA. :lol:
And on page 51, they acknowledge that helicopter access was a "significant theme in the initial engagement process".


It's completely insane the EOI process is running prior to a management plan. Horse before the cart if ever we've seen it.
I'm confident when the ACCC cotton on to the anti-competitive nature of the EOI process, the current tourism bodies(TT, TICT, DPIPWE) will be embroiled in cartel like behaviour. It's incompetent and stupid governance.
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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby stepbystep » Sat 14 Dec, 2019 12:39 pm

The idea of wilderness needs no defense, it only needs defenders ~ Edward Abbey
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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby bogholesbuckethats » Sun 15 Dec, 2019 4:24 pm

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

Postby Son of a Beach » Wed 18 Dec, 2019 9:36 am

Wow... just wow! The government has actually used "misappropriated" quotes from Truchanas and Dombrovski to promote developments in world heritage wilderness that their families confirm they would have been opposed to.

From The Examiner:

The Examiner wrote:The quotes featured in the state government's Towards a Tourism Master Plan which has drawn the ire of the families of Olegas Truchanas and Peter Dombrovskis.
The widows of pioneering Tasmanian conservationists Olegas Truchanas and Peter Dombrovskis have slammed a government department for using "misappropriated" quotes in a wilderness tourism master plan discussion paper.

The government released Parks and Wildlife's Towards a Tourism Master Plan document last week, a precursor to a formalised plan to guide tourism in Tasmania's Wilderness World Heritage Area.

But it was the use of two quotes, one from Mr Dombrovskis on page 6 and another from Mr Truchanas on page 11, that drew criticism.

In a statement, Melva Truchanas and Liz Dombrovskis said their late husbands would have been clearly opposed to the government's position on tourism within the TWWHA.

"Olegas and Peter would share our horror at the rush to commercialise wild places, the willingness of government to destroy wilderness and the perversion of process that has put the cart before the horse.

"How can government genuinely consult its constituents on a plan for tourism in the World Heritage Area when it has already changed the rules to allow pet projects to proceed?"

The quote attributed to Mr Truchanas - "A shining beacon in the dull, uniform and largely artificial world" - came at the end of a significantly longer sentence with additional meaning and also appeared to be slightly misquoted.

UNESCO requested the master plan in 2015 and last year raised concerns about wilderness areas being rezoned for tourism development, including for the hut proposal at Lake Malbena.




PS. And now it appears that they have been shamed into removing the quotes from an updated version of the pre-"plan" at https://dpipwe.tas.gov.au/Documents/Tow ... 0TWWHA.pdf
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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby bogholesbuckethats » Wed 18 Dec, 2019 11:48 am

https://www.themercury.com.au/news/opin ... ec5caa59be

Talking Point: Which wilderness tourism projects pass the jobs test?

GRAEME WELLS: Cost-benefit analysis must be applied to tourism projects


It is sometimes said that economists know the price of everything and the value of nothing. If this was ever true, it isn’t now. The practice of eliciting community values for unpriced services such as wilderness has become a well-worked field of economics, and has many applications, including cost-benefit analysis.

While the aphorism isn’t true of economics, it does still apply to the mindset of our politicians and lobbyists. How often do we see spending announcements restricted to just jobs and growth?

Of course, jobs and incomes matter. But for many proposals, this only tells part of the story.

Take Mr Gutwein’s recent announcement of funding for a research contract to support the growth and development in Tasmania’s nature-based tourism industry.

As usual, the scoping requirement for the research is private. But it is clear that the project is limited to the economic benefits of nature-based tourism. In other words, jobs and growth.

This narrow focus seems designed to deliver only one outcome — further development in national parks is in the public interest.

No doubt, many nature-based projects have been a boost for regional Tasmania. The northeastern bike trails are a great example. Projects of this kind have broad community support. But this consultancy looks like cover for further salami slicing of our precious wilderness.

An economy-wide snapshot, or even a regional analysis, does nothing to make a convincing case for specific proposals. As every economist knows, only a comprehensive cost-benefit analysis can provide a basis for support.

The proposal for helicopter access to a tourist facility at Lake Malbena provides a good example. The project itself will create up to three full-time equivalent jobs. It is not clear whether the modelling by the proponents includes indirect effects. But for good measure let’s add another job created by a few extra nights’ accommodation at, for instance, Pumphouse Point. That makes up to four jobs.

Any reasonable cost-benefit analysis would set that small benefit of four jobs against the loss in jobs from fishers and bushwalkers who stay away because of helicopter noise. Let alone the degradation of wilderness values for the larger community. Although the loss of value is not readily priced, it is real and it can be estimated using modern valuation techniques. Would the project survive a transparent and comprehensive cost-benefit analysis? Highly unlikely.

The limited focus on jobs and growth is part of a broader malaise. The public is kept in the dark about expressions of interest, almost until the deal is complete. Are leases granted on competitive terms, or is there an implicit subsidy? Are leases automatically renewed? In national parks, do proponents make any contribution to track maintenance and firefighting? The list goes on.

Then there are the consultancies. Scoping details are rarely made public. The same applies to final reports which are routinely kept from public scrutiny. Unless the analysis is readily available for public analysis, it is far too easy to cherrypick the best bits from the executive summary. That’s a temptation policy makers, advisers and lobbyists rarely resist.

From an economist’s perspective, policy development could be so much more productive.

There are two key elements. The first is transparency at all stages of policy development. The second is to take a broader perspective than the usual mantra of jobs and growth. Comprehensive cost-benefit analysis is essential for a broader perspective.

Good policy is unlikely to emerge when proponents, policy makers and nature lovers engage in an uninformed shouting match.

Graeme Wells is principal of Wells Economic Analysis, and a former associate professor at the University of Tasmania.
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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby taswegian » Wed 18 Dec, 2019 6:10 pm

Take Mr Gutwein’s recent announcement of funding for a research contract to support the growth and development in Tasmania’s nature-based tourism industry.

As usual, the scoping requirement for the research is private. But it is clear that the project is limited to the economic benefits of nature-based tourism. In other words, jobs and growth.

I'd suggest this is more about finding roadblocks to more open slather, unrestricted, development in WHA.
Find the issues that prevent smooth sailing and then make changes to allow a better flow through "the system".

That "legitimises" the application and subsequent approval.
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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby bogholesbuckethats » Thu 19 Dec, 2019 8:22 am

RMPAT final Malbena decision released

https://tnpa.org.au/rmpat-final-malbena ... -released/

The Resource Management and Planning Appeal Tribunal (RMPAT) decision of 21 October regarding the proposed helicopter-accessed tourist development at Lake Malbena indicated that it intended to set aside the Central Highlands Council’s refusal to grant a permit but it first required the determination of the conditions to be attached to any development approval.

RMPAT has now declined to consider further submissions relating primarily to the Parks and Wildlife Service’s Reserve Activity Assessment (RAA) of the proposal made on our behalf by the Environmental Defenders Office and, today (18 December 2019), issued its final decision requiring that Council’s refusal of 28 February 2019 be set aside and replaced with an approval subject to conditions set out in this final decision.

While many conditions that the Tribunal has imposed on the permit relate to construction details, they also state:

No more than 30 return helicopter trips annually for up to 6 guests and 2 guides (with no more than 25 or these during Nov-May), and no more than 10 return flights for servicing and maintenance, are allowed.
The trips can be 4 days and 3 nights’ duration.
No bushwalking or other land activities off Halls Island are allowed, apart from foot transit from the helicopter landing site, and the permitted route for this is defined in the conditions. “Fishing and kayaking” on Lake Malbena is permitted.
No infrastructure is allowed at the helicopter landing site.
RMPAT also issued some minor amendments to the original decision.

While this is a disappointing outcome, the battle is by no means lost. We will be carefully considering the Tribunal’s decision and will be taking advice with respect to our legal options.
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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby Lophophaps » Thu 19 Dec, 2019 5:47 pm

It may be that the lower number of clients may make the project non-viable. I like
"No bushwalking or other land activities off Halls Island are allowed, apart from foot transit from the helicopter landing site, and the permitted route for this is defined in the conditions. “Fishing and kayaking” on Lake Malbena is permitted."
This means a very limited experience for the clients, especially if there are no fish. I wonder what the penalty is for breaches. At some stage there may be a little bushwalk and a post on social media.

On that theme, are there water samples of Malbena now? If so, a future sample with pollution can reasonably be attributed to the people on the island. Maybe an oil slick from the helicopter.
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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby Somerfly » Sun 22 Dec, 2019 3:58 pm

Hi everyone. Just thought I would add my two cents worth as I have been following the comments on this proposal. This latest finding is the best news so far on this project since it effectively confines the clients to fish only in Malbena itself albeit from a boat but presumably unable to beach anywhere but Halls Island. As a keen fly fisherman I can say that I would not bother to fish this lake at all as there are many nearby waters that are much more productive than Malbena. The proponent is well aware of this and I'm sure will attempt to have this changed. Reg Hall would never envisioned his island becoming commercialised like this and must be spinning in his grave. Sorry if some of this has been said already and well done Greg and co. for the work done against this abomination to date. I agree with others that there is a bigger player behind all this and we all know that this is the line in the sand.
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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby Son of a Beach » Mon 13 Jan, 2020 10:34 am

According to Greg French on the Fly Life forums, at around the time that the developer's boat was air-dropped into Malbena, somebody started illegally cutting tracks with a chainsaw between Lake Malbena and Kita Lake and between Eagle Lake and Lake Norman.

See: https://flylife.com.au/forum/topic/why- ... na/page/31

There's no immediate evidence of who was doing this illegal chainsawing in the Walls of Jerusalem national park, but who-ever it is, I hope that they get caught and cop the full force of the law. Although I don't know how much force the law actually has, and I have doubts that the criminals will ever be caught.
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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby Nuts » Mon 13 Jan, 2020 12:24 pm

I have doubts the clients will be restricted to Lk.Malbena despite what has been said. Perhaps not under their lease agreement but such a restriction under his existing concession would be highly unusual.

That clearing is just disgusting disregard for wWHA :!: , generally extreme measures are taken to avoid such things (like placing camp platforms under giant eucs due to existing bare ground). It looks (from the pics) to have been done at the same time the boat was reported? Really, it's becoming a case of ingress into wWHA is nobody's business other than the management authority, whereas it's everyone's equally, and always has been (other than those who would do or allow such things).
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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby ofuros » Mon 13 Jan, 2020 3:16 pm

The helicopter crew/company may know whether there were chainsaws on board the boat, they would have thoroughly checked the load before lifting...chainsaw use in the wilderness makes my blood pressure rise.
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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby Lophophaps » Mon 13 Jan, 2020 4:11 pm

Should PAWS be advised of this and asked to investigate? There may be a requirement to do so for significant breaches. Maybe let the media know.
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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby johnrs » Mon 13 Jan, 2020 4:38 pm

And more details on the trackclearing here on the FAWAHA Facebook page.
https://www.facebook.com/FAWAHATas/post ... 13?__xts__[0]=68.ARAvy9MGgH5spoXcUXNmmuqxQpQFX-tKKy7fek4X_x9hg3KJfVs-USYyScpUVB2VQ4Fsq0ByG_Q3nz59hTFYAmVqR09BClioh52BKhbzWVCaeY6nG2_sCj8OVaCGWA08vQpnUFLfg9Sdbrin0pdE97J12Oa4v-O5EMsFQigRAi2ZDxf8zVW56d3DBac7D59_1Hfd83BqvX4te0btXos0eyT273I1rrQwwqqSuyPZYLFh3D1_MxRWrEDypN_PimI5f0Y-nLBL5-KSUxX0ap9vx8Bg4wVhVWFnbw6thcgiIVH4230i3o5mkYQ6sry8kQz9Xedn7qIJWFeN7esvikLd8xA&__tn__=-R
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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby Nuts » Mon 13 Jan, 2020 7:02 pm

Lophophaps wrote:Should PAWS be advised of this and asked to investigate? There may be a requirement to do so for significant breaches. Maybe let the media know.


Yes P&W definitely should be asked, and have been apparently. If you feel strongly, ask for investigation or answers at every level, send pics to media, set up your own cameras (if adequate rules no longer apply).
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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby taswegian » Mon 13 Jan, 2020 9:40 pm

What does his permit say in regards to "other development" required to fulfil the permitted devolpment?

As to new tracks. Its possible it's an Oops moment, apologise, request permission, damage already done, no real long term detriment to the environs, public benefit substantiated, let's move on. Thanks for the approval retrospectively granted.
That is standard fare for requests to amend a permit.

That may sound cynical, but it's the way unscrupulous operators work these days, and, unfortunately get away with it.

All that aside, it's pathetic, disgraceful to say the least.
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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby Lophophaps » Tue 14 Jan, 2020 6:14 am

Hidden cameras activated my movement could be useful. Retrospective approval for something that is proscribed but exists is morally bankrupt. Track cutting in WHA is illegal unless approved by agencies - in advance.
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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby stepbystep » Tue 14 Jan, 2020 9:10 am

The tracks have been cut between the shore of L Malbena and Kita Lake and between Eagle Tarn and Lake Norman.

Kita Lake provides extremely good fishing(unlike Malbena). Lake Norman is extremely beautiful and provides wonderful views through to the reserve.

These tracks can ONLY benefit someone who is using a boat on Lake Malbena, dare I contend, from a base camp on Halls Island.

It's worth noting that any bushwalker that has arrived in that area under their own steam would have ZERO use for those tracks, it's easy off track walking.

Media and authorities have been notified.
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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby bogholesbuckethats » Tue 14 Jan, 2020 11:43 am

Lake Malbena fight heading for Supreme Court in latest appeal
Conservationists fighting a tourism development within the Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area are taking their legal case to the Supreme Court.

David Killick. The Mercury

CONSERVATIONISTS fighting a tourism development within the Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area are taking their legal case to the Supreme Court.

Daniel Hackett has a lease over Halls Island in Lake Malbena in the Central Highlands granted after his plans for a helicopter-serviced standing camp passed through the government’s controversial Expressions of Interest process.

His development approval was knocked back by the Central Highlands Council, but that decision was overturned by the Resource Management and Planning Appeal Tribunal in December.

And in November, the Federal Court found the Reserve Activity Assessment process, which is used by the Parks and Wildlife Service to assess tourism proposals, had “no apparent statutory basis”.

Tasmanian National Parks Association president Nicholas Sawyer said the Supreme Court appeal also challenged the use of the RAA process as part of the development approval.

“Our appeal to the Supreme Court is challenging the tribunal’s ruling that it could rely on the Tasmania Parks and Wildlife Service’s reserve activity assessment to determine whether the Lake Malbena proposal is in accordance with the Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area Management Plan 2016,” he said.

“Our appeal will also argue that the tribunal should not have relied on the reserve activity assessment decision because that decision was also defective.

He said the case would be important in helping to establish what standards would be applied to developments proposed within wilderness areas.

“The Tasmanian National Parks Association is pursuing this matter because it has major implications for the many other intrusive tourism developments currently being considered for Tasmania’s national parks under the state government’s secretive Expressions of Interest process,” he said.

“The policy of locating tourism developments around the edge of Tasmania’s Wilderness World Heritage Area while preserving the wild character of the more remote areas has worked well for decades – it is not clear why the state government and elements of the tourism industry are so keen to overturn this sensible and effective approach.”

The state government is running an open-ended expressions of interest process for developers to submit proposals for tourism projects on public land.

There have been 32 projects made public after passing through the process, and an unknown number of other are being considered in secret.

Terms and conditions of the lease agreements made with developers are not make public.

The appeal is expected to be heard by the Supreme Court later this year.
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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby gayet » Tue 14 Jan, 2020 2:56 pm

I see Mr Hodgman has resigned.
Although no details of when or if that includes a retirement from Parliament or just a move to the backbench for a bit....

Might be useful in getting a slightly more nature friendly environment policy.
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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby bogholesbuckethats » Tue 14 Jan, 2020 3:30 pm

gayet wrote:I see Mr Hodgman has resigned.
Although no details of when or if that includes a retirement from Parliament or just a move to the backbench for a bit....


I believe he has retired from parliament and will be replaced by the next Lib in line, most likely Nic Street.

gayet wrote: Might be useful in getting a slightly more nature friendly environment policy.


Not if Gutwein puts his hand up.
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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby north-north-west » Tue 14 Jan, 2020 3:51 pm

gayet wrote:I see Mr Hodgman has resigned.
Although no details of when or if that includes a retirement from Parliament or just a move to the backbench for a bit....


What was said in the press conference implies resignation from the premiership effective very soon, if not immediately, as there was a reference to the leadership being a matter for the party meeting next week.

Might be useful in getting a slightly more nature friendly environment policy.


It's the party that sets the policy and this is the Libs we're talking about.
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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby johnrs » Wed 15 Jan, 2020 1:34 pm

Details of the Supreme Court Appeal here.
Filed by the Tasmanian Envoronmental Defenders office who would greatly appreciate any donations.
I guess the Supreme Court will not come cheaply!
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Environmental Defenders Office, acting on behalf of The Wilderness Society (Tasmania), the Tasmanian National Parks Association and two individuals has filed an appeal in the Tasmanian Supreme Court against the decision of the Resource Management and Planning Appeal Tribunal to issue a permit in December 2019 for the Lake Malbena tourist development in the Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area.
“Our clients are appealing against the permit issued by the Tribunal for helicopter-accessed visitor accommodation in a World Heritage wilderness area in central Tasmania”, said Nicole Sommer, EDO Managing Lawyer, Hobart.
More here on EDO legal actions concerning the Lake Malbena proposal.
“The appeal is on two grounds. We will argue that the Tribunal made an error of law in its interpretation of the planning scheme in finding that it could rely on the Tasmanian Parks and Wildlife’s Reserve Activity Assessment for the proposal instead of undertaking its own assessment against the reserve management plan for the TWWHA.
“We will also argue that the Tribunal should not have relied on the Reserve Activity Assessment for the proposed development because it was defective.”
An appeal in the Supreme Court can only be taken on a question of law arising from the Tribunal’s decision.
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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby johnrs » Wed 15 Jan, 2020 1:36 pm

And here is a link to the Tasmanian National Parks Association fundraiser
https://www.givenow.com.au/lakemalbenaappeal
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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby bogholesbuckethats » Fri 17 Jan, 2020 12:54 pm

The Advocate 17th January 2020

Illegally cut tracks in the Walls of Jerusalem National Park will be investigated by the Parks and Wildlife Service.

A PWS spokesperson said the removal of vegetation between Lake Malbena to Kita Lake and from Eagle Tarn to Lake Norman had been brought to the attention of the service by a representative of the Fishers and Walkers against Helicopter Access group.

"The extent of the vegetation removal appears to be minor, but nonetheless warrants further investigation although the PWS considers that the culprits may be difficult to identify given the age of the cuts and the time that has passed," the spokesperson said.

"It is possible that these tracks could have been cut by anyone; it is inappropriate to direct or make these allegations towards any person or operator at this stage."


FAWAHA said on the ground investigations revealed the large tracks had been cut with a chainsaw and they appear to have been cut in the last six to nine months.

Group spokesman Dan Broun said the location of the tracks was suspicious as no bushwalker using traditional routes would have any need for the new paths.

"Parks and Wildlife and tourism bodies should condemn this act and the PWS should investigate immediately. Guilty parties should be prosecuted," Mr Broun said.

"The PWS needs to explain how this can happen.

"Fishers and Walkers of Tasmania will not rest until the Western Lakes wilderness is kept wild and free for all Tasmanians to access."

If the public has any information, please contact the PWS compliance officer at compliance@parks.tas.gov.au.
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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby Nuts » Fri 17 Jan, 2020 1:08 pm

Nothing 'minor' about that. And nonetheless, the tracked area should now be closed off, rehabilitated and monitored (as someone with an interest in cutting those tracks clearly can't be trusted).
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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby lefroy » Mon 20 Jan, 2020 4:30 pm

To quote Gutwein in his first speech as the new premier ' tasmania is on the verge of becoming the eco tourism capital of the world' seems the EOI process will be staying :(
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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby taswegian » Tue 21 Jan, 2020 6:39 pm

Ego tourism is or will kill the goose that laid the golden egg.
Not sure how you get that message where it has effect, but I see this as a key ingredient in preventing wanton waste of our precious natural resources.

The argument 'balance' is always used but there's never a scale to gauge what that means.
It takes some truthful arguments that have the capacity to triumph over random hot air 'truths' that are spouted from those in high places.

I don't have answers but fighting fire with fire isn't IMO, a productive response.
By that I mean lies shouldn't be countered with half truths and poorly worded arguments.
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Re: Luxury camp inside Walls of Jerusalem WHA with heli acce

Postby Nuts » Tue 21 Jan, 2020 7:08 pm

They may not be very productive but half-truths and poorly worded arguments are what you'd expect of people displaying passion and trying (sometimes desperately) to word their love of nature. Not slick or crafted. I'm sure many older people never thought they'd ever have to have this emerging fight, struggle with even needing to relate esoteric concepts to ignorant or dodgy or greedy & dispassionate managers, politicians, developers.
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