Groups hail land use agreement in Cape York

Groups hail land use agreement in Cape York

Indigenous groups have welcomed a historic agreement for land use on Queensland’s vast Cape York Peninsula.

Laws introduced into State Parliament today will give Indigenous people joint management of national parks and will allow some developments, such as aquaculture projects, on Aboriginal land.

The bill protects sensitive environmental areas but also provides certainty for graziers.

Noel Pearson, from the Cape York Land Council, says it has been a long fight to reach a resolution and there have been considerable tensions between the stakeholders.

“This is a day of very, very turbulent feelings, because it comes 17 years after we first embarked on this crusade,” he said.

“I really do feel land rights is going to be put behind us … and we can get onto the social agenda of development and welfare reform.”

Agforce president Peter Kenny says he is pleased there are also guarantees for land access for graziers.

“The pastoral industry in the Cape has been in a position where it was never felt it was secure,” he said.

“I believe this bill gives us the security now to go forward – something that we’ve been trying to get in place for a number of years.”



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