A world-renowned conservation, cultural and ecotourism destination has been formally recognised with the creation of the Yawuru Nagulagun/Roebuck Bay Marine Park in the waters around Broome.
Releasing 10-year management plans for the marine park and adjacent Yawuru Birragun Conservation Park in Broome today, Premier and Tourism Minister Colin Barnett said the new parks would be jointly managed with the Yawuru people, boosting conservation and tourism in the west Kimberley.
"The Liberal National Government has committed more than $103 million to stimulating growth in the region while protecting its natural attractions, through the Kimberley Science and Conservation Strategy," Mr Barnett said.
"The creation of these parks gives Yawuru people the opportunity to be employed to work on their traditional lands and waters through cultural and heritage tourism opportunities."
The Premier said the new parks would conserve biodiversity values while continuing to encourage visitors and locals to enjoy activities such as boating, fishing, kayaking, viewing dinosaur footprints, birdwatching, walking and whale watching.
"The marine park will also build upon the State Government's earlier decision to remove commercial gillnetting from Roebuck Bay and ensure the recreational fishing experience is world class and the values of the bay are conserved," he said.
Environment Minister Albert Jacob said Roebuck Bay was an internationally significant wetland and one of the most important feeding grounds for migratory shorebirds in Australia - boasting possibly the greatest diversity of shorebird species for any site on the planet.
"Roebuck Bay's biodiversity is extensive and the marine park provides enhanced protection for threatened species such as the snubfin dolphin, flatback turtle, olive ridley turtle and the specially protected dugong," Mr Jacob said.
"The plans afford a high level of protection for all areas of the parks providing an integrated 'whole of country' approach to management of the Yawuru conservation estate."
The Yawuru Nagulagun/Roebuck Bay Marine Park covers about 78,840ha from Gantheaume Point in the north to Cape Villaret in the south
The Yawuru Birragun Conservation Park covers about 19,120ha of land outside of the Broome town site
15,330 submissions were received during the public comment period
Premier and Tourism Minister's office - 6552 5000
Environment Minister's office - 6552 5800