Cassy O’Connor MP | Greens Leader and Parks spokesperson
The decision of Halls Island heli-tourism proponent, Wild Drake Pty Ltd, to withdraw from their planning appeal is a win for conservationists, anglers and all Tasmanians who want this island’s World Heritage wilderness to remain protected.
The news of this reprieve is an early Christmas gift for wilderness lovers, and should send a strong signal to other Parks EOI proponents that Tasmanians who love their protected areas will fight to keep them wild, and public.
Lutruwita/Tasmania’s World Heritage Area, national parks and reserves should not be open for commercial exploitation, and they will be defended by all those who understand that.
Mr Hackett’s claims his proposal for Hall Island has passed all “merit-based” assessments at all levels of government are nothing more than hot air. It was turned down by the Central Highlands Council, there was no statutory assessment process with public input at the State level and the developer has been required to go back and start again under the Federal EPBC approval.
Mr Hackett should walk away from the this divisive proposal now. Reg Hall’s historic hut and Lake Malbena don’t belong to him.
Conservationists, anglers, bushwalkers, the Greens and all those who love this island’s publicly owned protected areas won’t give up. We will never stop defending Tasmania’s wilderness treasures from privatisation and degradation.