Fresh threats to Gardens of Stone Conservation Area


The NSW Government is currently considering granting a lease to Wild Bush Luxury Experience to operate for-profit cabins in the globally significant pagoda landscape of the Gardens of Stone State Conservation Area. The proposed development in this protected and wild area is inconsistent with the Plan of Management and fails to explain how sewage, visual impacts and other pollution will be managed.

Greens MP and spokesperson for the Environment Sue Higginson said “The Gardens of Stone have only been in the protected area network for 2 years, but the Minns Labor Government is already considering allowing high-impact commercial development in this globally significant site,”

“The commercialisation of protected areas in NSW was a brainchild of the former Liberal Government, so it is deeply disappointing that Premier Minns is still considering this,”

“Protected areas must be managed in such a way that the natural and cultural values of the places are retained and improved if possible. The construction of permanent, inappropriately placed, for profit cabins is entirely inconsistent with the intent of protecting special places in the public interest,”

“The cabins, if built, will have a significant impact on the visual value of the Gardens of Stone because they are sited on both ridgelines and escarpments. Impacts of the construction and ongoing operations on water quality and other natural features have not been addressed or even recognised before this lease is proposed to be granted,”

“This commercial development in a protected area is a test for the Minns Labor Government. Are they just a different colour of Liberal, or do they want to preserve natural values in protected areas in the public interest for everyone?” Ms Higginson said.