Ecotourism Australia
Ecotourism Australia's 2006 International Conference

Hon Lindy Nelson Carr
Minister for Environment and Multiculturalism
  Hon Lindy Nelson Carr

Lindy Nelson-Carr was elected to Queensland Parliament in June 1998 in the seat of Mundingburra in Townsville, North Queensland and is presently in her fourth term. Before entering politics Lindy was a teacher.

Lindy's current position is Minister for Environment and Multiculturalism.
Lindy was previously Parliamentary Secretary to the Premier in North Queensland and to the Minister for Transport and Main Roads. The two roles are varied with a wide range of projects and issues enabling Lindy to work in partnership with business, industry and the community of North Queensland. In her second term Lindy was Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Health and Minister Assisting the Premier on Women's Policy.

Her diverse interests involve her in many legislative committees including Premiers, Education and the Arts, State Development and Innovation, Attorney-General and Justice, Transport and Main Roads. She was also Co-Chair of the Multicultural Women's Advisory Committee and Chair of the Labor Women's Caucus until 2004.

Lindy is also a Member of the James Cook University Council, Member of the Lifeline Board of Governance and Member of the Museum of Tropical Queensland Advisory Committee as well as being Patron of many community and sporting organisations in the Townsville region. Lindy has a large blended family.


Queensland has over 1000 protected areas in national parks, state forests and related conservation areas. These areas provide a foundation for Queensland's ecotourism industry, one of the state's fastest growing tourism sectors. Each year, approximately 16.2 million visits are made to national parks and other Queensland protected areas. In 2003-2004, visitors to Queensland's National Parks spent over $1 billion, contributing $439M to Queensland's Gross State Product. Queensland is a world leader in the provision of high quality, diverse Ecotourism and nature-based tourism experiences.

The Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service (QPWS) is the key managing agency for Queensland's protected areas and aims to balance the needs and interests of visitors to national parks with the mandate of preservation. QPWS wants visitors to feel welcome in parks and to enjoy the wonderful opportunities that parks provide. At the same time, QPWS needs to be sure that visitors are safe, and that visits are not causing damage to the environment or the facilities provided.

The management of protected areas to provide sustainable use by both commercial and independent visitors is becoming increasingly complex. Innovative initiatives are required to cater for Queensland's domestic population and anticipated tourism growth. In developing these initiatives, QPWS is aiming to provide the tourism industry with a more stable operating environment and facilitate effective environmental management by operators. QPWS recognises that commercial tourism operations play a vital role in the presentation and interpretation of natural areas.

This paper will explore the initiatives (such as the tourism in protected areas framework, tourism forums and tourism liaison officers) my Agency has developed to assist in building an efficient, effective and sustainable tourism industry on our precious protected area estate.


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