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Liberals and Labor Back Secretive Wilderness Destruction

Cassy O'Connor MP  -  Tuesday, 13 April 2021

Tags: Transparency, National Parks, Parks EOIs, Tourism, Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area

Cassy O’Connor MP | Greens Leader and Parks spokesperson

Tasmanians have long known the EOI process is a stinky exploitative process, initiated by the Liberals and supported by the Labor Party that would degrade Tasmania is wilderness, and privatize its priceless treasures. 
Despite that, revelations there are 60 Expressions of Interest for tourist developments in public protected areas will shock many. This is a process that is completely hidden from the people of Tasmania.

Where are the remaining proposals, and at what scale? What assurances have been made to potential developers? What values will be compromised by developers to make a profit at the expense of wilderness?
Tasmanians from all walks of life care about our island home’s unique wilderness. They recognize this is an assault on public protected areas designed to shut them out in favour of the Liberals’ developer friends.
The Greens are proud defenders of lutruwita/Tasmania’s wild places. We have strongly opposed the Liberals’ secretive, corrupted EOI process. It’s becoming clearer and clearer just how secretive it is. 

Unlike Labor, we will not stand by in silence while this government does its best to destroy this island’s globally significant wilderness and ignores communities disenfranchised and angered by the EOIs. 
A strong tourism industry, with environmental integrity, is crucial in providing jobs for Tasmanians - particularly in regional areas. The Liberals’ plan would erode everything that underpins that and makes this state unique in the world.

The EOI process not only degrades wilderness, it undermines the tourism industry and the hard won globally recognised, clean green brand.  
Rather than supporting businesses around the state in an open and transparent way, the Liberals have been running dodgy backroom deals through the Office of the Coordinator General. The information that has come to light over the last seven years has primarily been made public through whistleblowers or lengthy Right to Information requests undertaken by the Greens.  
What we have found out has been shocking. The Liberals gifted an “exclusive possession” lease of an entire island in the World Heritage area to a private company for just $80 a week. 

Many Tasmanians - from all walks of life - care deeply about lutruwita/Tasmania’s wilderness. For every person who wants to see these special places properly protected, there is only one choice this election - voting Green.