Australia | Government to bankroll 5 new Indigenous PAS
Australia’s Indigenous Protected Areas are like national parks, but they are managed by local Aboriginal peoples, who use a combination of traditional methods and Western science to safeguard their land and culture in collaboration with government. Since 1997, the growth of these areas under the Australian Indigenous Protected Area program, and their beneficial impact on the environment and local communities, has been one of remote Australia’s great success stories.
In late May, the program expanded its reach when the Australian Government said it would fund five new Indigenous Protected Areas on the lands of the Ngururrpa, Ngadju, Spinifex Pilki, Olkola, and Crocodile Islands Traditional Owner groups. These areas are expected to cover nearly 14 million hectares—twice the size of Tasmania—and increases the total land area of Indigenous Protected Areas to larger than the state of New South Wales. The groups will now consult with their communities and, alongside government, develop plans to enhance protections and management of their land and sea country.