On Wednesday, it was very disappointing to see our National Parks be delivered a cruel blow by the Marshall Liberal Government, supported by SA-Best and Advance SA (all former Xenophon MPs), who voted to allow unlimited private tourism development within Flinders Chase National Park on Kangaroo Island.
These new regulations, which have now been upheld despite Hon Mark Parnell’s disallowance motion, allow any tourism development in the National Park worth more than $1 million to be approved without planning consent, or consultation, including community challenge. Further, any vegetation in the National Park that the developer wants to clear for buildings, roads, tracks, fire-breaks etc. will no longer be assessed by the Native Vegetation Council, and instead will be approved by a public servant answerable to the Planning Minister.
The Government has made it clear. They want to open up our Parks to private developers and they are prepared to throw out proper planning and environmental assessment in the process. Under the slogan of “reimagining” our Parks, the Liberals and their supporters envisage a future where our Public Parks become Private Playgrounds.