A McGowan Labor Government will work with the local community and local industries to expand the Wellington National Park.
Visiting Wellington National Park today, Shadow Environment Minister Chris Tallentire and Collie-Preston MLA Mick Murray said the expansion would boost tourism, create new jobs and preserve the natural environment.
Any expansion would be implemented in consultation with other industries and the local community.
Mr Tallentire said the expansion would provide strong protection to the area’s unique flora and fauna and open up the forest to be better used for recreation activities such as mountain biking or hiking.
Mr Murray said the expansion would create a central recreation and conservation hub linking the Donnybrook-Balingup, Collie, Dardanup, Harvey and Capel shires – providing new opportunities for local tourism.
Comments from Shadow Environment Minister Chris Tallentire:
“The bushland and wildlife in the Wellington Forest area is absolutely stunning. We’ll protect it by expanding the Wellington National Park.
“This will be a job-creator. An expanded National Park will provide new opportunities for local tourism, support small business and create jobs.
“I know how popular the area is with mountain bike riders, so we’ll be investigating how best to enhance the trails and look into boosting other day use activities. Mountain bike riders and hikers come from far and wide and love to enjoy the tourism offerings here.
Comments from Collie-Preston MLA Mick Murray:
“The expansion will link the five shires in the area to create a new central forest recreation area for day use activities like hiking and mountain biking.
“The expanded National Park will create new jobs in tourism, hospitality and small business, for the benefit of the whole South West.
“We also plan to open up some parts of the National Park to locals and campers to be able to walk the family dog.
“Locals will be very much involved in guiding this plan. We will engage the community in a full consultation process to guide planning and management to protect the area’s biodiversity while opening it up for recreation activities.