The Tarkine has long been a multi-use area and acknowledging the real Tarkine’s peopled history benefits everyone.
When Tasmanian communities, interest groups and industries work to co-exist, the benefits are multiplied; it doesn’t have to be ‘us versus them’ as others seek to portray.
The Tasmanian Minerals and Energy Council supports multi-use of the Tarkine.
There are many examples where an inclusive approach has delivered results: the Tarkine Trails’ access to the Savage River Mine pipeline track; the mining industry’s protection of native species through weed, feral cat and fire management; and the use of mine exploration tracks to conduct remote flora and fauna surveys are good cases in point.
The natural beauty in sections of the Tarkine is definitely an attraction for some tourists. But the Tarkine also appeals to tourists with interests as diverse as the activities that take place there.
There’s potential to showcase the region’s geology, pioneering history, Aboriginal cultural heritage, industry innovations, and current land management practices. More than ten mine sites are situated throughout the Tarkine, with modern mining practices and employees who take pride in the work that they do and in the landscapes within which they do it.
These are features to be recognised, reconciled and in many cases celebrated, not conveniently ignored to suit a single point of view.
The Tarkine is made more unique by its variety of landscapes, land-uses and long history of human interaction.
Throughout the 1880s and 90s there were tracks, horse-drawn and mechanised tramways, railways, bridges and flying foxes across the Tarkine supporting the significant mining activities which saw one in seven Tasmanians living on the West coast.
Its multi-use status is critical to the making of today’s Tasmania and, if maintained, can be a strong basis to a successful, shared-use future.