Published on : Wednesday, July 26, 2017
According to the latest research, the obstructions for tourism operators to receive right of entry to national parks have been made much hassle-free. However, the conservation benefits are yet to be realized.
The Department of Conservation or DOC is responsible for granting permission to the businesses to utilize public conservation land.
However, the Victoria University research found that DOC was not counting on meaningful environmental requirements in the concessions.
Valentina Dinica is the senior lecturer and the paper on sustainable tourism is to be published by the Journal of Sustainable Tourism.
Dr Dinica mentioned that the government has presented the idea of conservation economy whereby policies and agreements for concession arrangements would be made stress-free in lieu of contributions from concessionaires to conservation, environmental and infrastructural challenges facing DOC.
She also highlighted that the topic was repeated in the department’s Statement of Intent, which mentions that DOC would work with businesses “to achieve conservation gains in ways that deliver environmental, social and economic benefits to New Zealanders”.
To quote Dr. Dinica, “We don’t see an improvement in terms of conservation gain at contract level, if you look at the concession regulatory framework, but we see change on the other side of the equation that now concession contracts are longer.”