The McGowan Government is investing more than $25 million over the next four years towards the creation and management of national parks, marine parks and other conservation reserves under the flagship Plan for Our Parks initiative.
The funding will help develop Indigenous Land Use Agreements and management plans to ensure the proposed reserves meet the aspirations of traditional owners, while delivering environmental, tourism and on-country employment outcomes.
Additional to the new investment of $25.6 million, the McGowan Government is committing significant funds towards infrastructure and management of individual reserves proposed under Plan for Our Parks, including:
- $3.35 million over the next four years for the expansion of Wellington National Park near Collie, and to upgrade roads, visitor facilities and enhance recreation and tourism opportunities in the park;
- $8.4 million over the next two years for the creation and management of Kalgulup Regional Park at Bunbury. The 3,100-hectare park is a stronghold for biodiversity and was recently named to reflect the area’s significance for Noongar people;
- $6.7 million over the next four years to build public recreation facilities and implement traditional owner joint management of the Ningaloo Coastal Reserves in partnership with the Gnulli native title holders;
- $13.8 million for infrastructure and management of the Houtman Abrolhos Islands National Park over the next four years, including the installation of new jetties; and
- $2 million over the next four years for the creation and management of a proposed national park at Helena Aurora Range.
The Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions continues to progress the creation of a national park at the Fitzroy River; marine parks in the Buccaneer Archipelago, proposed conservation reserves in Badimia country and the proposed Matuwa Kurrarra Kurrarra National Park in the Mid-West.
As stated by Environment Minister Stephen Dawson:
“Plan for Our Parks is progressing very well, with the McGowan Government having already created the Houtman Abrolhos Islands National Park, added land to Murujuga National Park and created a class A reserve to protect the Beeliar Wetlands.
“At the core of this initiative is a new era of working with traditional owners, to foster enhanced consultation and strong joint management partnerships for the benefit of the environment, culture, jobs, training, regional economies and society at large.
“While we continue to feel the effects of COVID-19, the McGowan Government is working to invigorate the tourism industry and encourage people to ‘Wander out Yonder’, and the investment in Plan for Our Parks is going to provide even more tourism opportunities.
“I am proud that by investing in our most precious and iconic natural areas, we can showcase and conserve them, to be enjoyed by current and future generations.”