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Environmental Defenders Office Ltd (Hobart)

We're heading to court to protect Lake Malbena


Tasmanians love our national parks and reserves.

We walk, camp, swim, paddle, fish, and ride in them. We enjoy family trips to favourite spots and adventures to new places. We treasure the sanctuary parks provide to our unique wildlife, their significant cultural landscapes, and the solitude of our wilderness areas.

Like many of you, we're concerned by plans to allow private tourism development in the Walls of Jerusalem National Park, and helicopter flights to stunning Lake Malbena and over surrounding areas.

That’s why we’re heading to court.

EDO, on behalf of our client, The Wilderness Society, is seeking to overturn the Federal Government’s decision to allow a tourism project to proceed without detailed assessment under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (EPBC Act).

We’re taking on this legal action to protect Tasmania’s World Heritage Area and to keep our wild places wild. But we need your help.

We want to see the Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area maintained as a sanctuary for native flora and fauna, and its natural and cultural values preserved for future generations.

This project would see Halls Island effectively privatised, with associated helicopter flights disturbing the tranquillity that is so important to those who love the Western Lakes.

When the proposal was referred to the Federal Minister earlier this year more than 900 people objected. Despite the concerns raised by scientists, conservationists, recreational fishers, the Aboriginal Heritage Council and the National Parks and Wildlife Advisory Council, the Minister’s delegate determined that the project did not require any further assessment or approval under the EPBC Act.

That’s where this case comes in.

The EPBC Act requires actions which are likely to have a significant impact on a matter of national environmental significance, such as World Heritage values, to be subject to rigorous and transparent assessment.

On behalf of our clients, we will be arguing that the delegate failed to apply the EPBC Act to the Lake Malbena proposal in the way it is intended to be applied.

If we are successful, the Federal Government would have to go back to the drawing board and make a clear, transparent assessment of the environmental impacts of this project.

This case will help ensure our environmental laws are being upheld and used to protect our internationally-recognised wild places in the way the community expects.

Your tax-deductible donation will help us to fight to keep Tasmania’s wild places wild.

Thanks for your support. This legal action is a crucial step towards ensuring the Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area remains in public hands and safe from overdevelopment. 

Find out more about EDO's work on a wide range of environmental law issues on our website. If you would prefer not to donate online, click here for more options.

Please note: We'd like to stay in touch. Donors to EDO will be sent email communication from time-to-time, including our fortnightly e-bulletin with news on the environment, law reform, legal cases, events and more. Feel free to opt out at anytime.


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