Eyes on Eyre
Tourism is one of the fastest growing industries in the region and a major part of the regional economy, currently growing by 16% each year, with strong tourism growth expected to continue. The challenge this presents for natural resource management is - How do we (as a collectively community) effectively manage environmental impacts resulting from increased visitation to the region.
Eyes on Eyre is an initiative between the Eyre Peninsula Landscape Board, Regional Development Australia Whyalla and Eyre Peninsula (RDAWEP) and the Eyre Peninsula Local Government Association (EPLGA) in conjunction with coastal councils. Together we have achieved a number of outcomes to try and minimise environmental impacts and at the same time improve visitor amenity which include:
1. Producing a Coastal Vehicle Access Decision Making Framework (completed 2017). The framework guides environmental, social and economic values decision making along the coast. It also provides clear recommendations for councils and other organisations who manage the coast through a suite of management options and consistent guidelines.
2. Explored the use of by-laws as a mechanism for managing aspects of coastal access, such as camping fees.
3. Developed a regional approach to messaging and promotion, positioning the region as a destination of choice for a wide range of coastal experiences.
It was identified in early 2018 that the formalisation of some historical camping sites would benefit these areas environmentally and allow a better experience for visitors (whether locals or tourists). A list of possible sites was then finalised through consultation with local councils being Fitzgerald Bay, Point Gibbon, Redbanks, Lipson Cove, Fishery Bay, Farm Beach, Sheringa Beach, Walker’s Rock and Tractor Beach. In early 2019 a landscape architect was contracted to produce concept plans for campsite upgrades. These concept plans have now had community input and been endorsed by the relevant local council. Currently planning approvals are being acquired so that works can begin in 2020.