Wet Tropics Regional Agreement

The Wet Tropics Regional Agreement (2005) provides for the cooperative management of the Wet Tropics World Heritage Area by the 18 Rainforest Aboriginal people associated with the Area, and the Australian and Queensland Governments.

The Agreement addresses key recommendations from the 1998 report Which Way Our Cultural Survival - the Review of Aboriginal Involvement in the Management of the Wet Tropics World Heritage Area. It recognises the significant contribution Rainforest Aboriginal people make to the management of the cultural and natural resources of the Area.

The central principles of the agreement are to recognise Rainforest Aboriginal people's rights and interests and to afford them the opportunity to define and negotiate their own priorities, needs and aspirations for management of the Wet Tropics. A collaborative and equitable approach between World Heritage management agencies and Rainforest Aboriginal people is of vital importance in achieving these principles.

 

Key achievements

The main achievements of the Agreement have been:

  • Establishment of a peak organisation and a statutory advisory committee to broadly represent Rainforest Aboriginal people on land and cultural heritage matters across the World Heritage Area. The Aboriginal Rainforest Council operated from September 2004 until March 2008, and a key outcome was their collaboration with Traditional Owner groups to develop the cultural values application for the National Heritage listing process. The Rainforest Aboriginal Advisory Council officially advised the Board from February 2005 until March 2011. The Rainforest  Aboriginal People's Alliance now serves these roles as an independent peak Indigenous entity for land and sea management in the Wet Tropics.
  • Increased participation in decision making through structural arrangements, such as the inclusion of a second Rainforest Aboriginal person on the Board. In 2006, the Queensland Government made legislative changes to ensure that at least two of the seven Directors of the Board must be Aboriginal people from the Wet Tropics.
  • Recognition of the cultural values of the Wet Tropics through support to list the World Heritage Area for its cultural values on the National Heritage List and potentially the World Heritage List (to complement its current World Heritage listing for natural values).
  • Participation in policy, planning, permitting and management through a set of principles, guidelines and very detailed protocols which outline appropriate ways to engage and involve Rainforest Aboriginal people in World Heritage management.
 

News and Events

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News and Events

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Yellow crazy ant taskforce go to battle

Yellow crazy ant taskforce go to battle

Taskforce set to hand-treat yellow crazy ant infestations in southern Cairns suburbs and World Heritage Area... READ MORE

The Authority's July eNews out now

The Authority's July eNews out now

From taking to the skies to getting down among the rainforest and communities, the Authority has been spreading itself wide. ... READ MORE

Kids get 'wild' with eco-art sculptures

Kids get 'wild' with eco-art sculptures

The Wet Tropics Management Authority has joined students, parents and teachers at the Cairns Botanic Gardens Centre to celebrate their contributi... READ MORE