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National Parks are proclaimed to protect and preserve specific values in the area. To achieve this the Parks Service places many restrictions on how the area may be used by the public.

A comparison of the normal activities that are allowed in National Parks compared with those in State Forests is set out below.

Activity

National Park

State Forest

Dogs and pets allowed.

No

Yes

Bushwalking on tracks

Yes

Yes

Bushwalking off tracks

No

Yes

Orienteering

Some parks

Yes

Tree Climbing

No

Yes

Camping

Sites only

Yes

Hunting

No

Yes

Horse riding

No

Yes

4 x 4 Driving on roads

Some roads

Yes

4 x 4 Driving on fire tracks

No

Yes

Trail bike riding

Some parks

Yes

Car rallies

No

Yes

Fossicking for gold, gems, etc

No

Yes

Stone Quarrying

No

Yes

Mineral Exploration &Mining

No

Yes

Non-wood product harvesting

No

Yes

Sawlogs, pulp harvesting

No

Yes

Poles, posts, piles, beams, etc

No

Yes

Firewood collection

No

Yes

Eucalyptus oil production

No

Yes

Stone and gravel extraction

No

Yes

Grazing

No

Yes

Bee keeping

Some parks

Yes

 

5. Inclusion of the beach and foreshore within the park

The public lands between the low water mark and the Great Ocean Road (GOR) and in many cases well beyond the GOR should not be included within the proposed national park. The restrictions that apply within NPs would make it almost impossible for the community to use the beaches and foreshore areas for its normal summer pursuits.

Inclusion of the GOR in a NP would also inhibit the much needed improvements to the realignment and widening of the road that are required to cater for the increasing summer traffic loads.

 

6. Protection of coastal settlements from fire.

One of the most likely outcomes of the inquiry into the 2003 bushfires will be a proposal to manage the public lands adjacent to townships and settlements primarily for fire protection purposes. Inclusion of the public land areas adjacent to the settlements of Aireys Inlet, Moggs Creek, Lorne, Wye River, Grey River, etc in a park would significantly reduce the communities ability to manage such areas primarily for settlement protection.

 

Conclusions

Every community needs access to the amenities that can only be provided by a State Forest.

We should support the LCC's original land use determination to provide for the management of public lands for specific public needs.

Can the community really afford to lock up all the public lands in the Otway region for a single purpose?

Make your opinions known by write to VEAC, 250 Victoria Parade. East Melbourne, Vic 3002 or veac@nre.vic.gov.au

by the 28th April.