Re: Cairns foreshore mudflats

Subject: Re: Cairns foreshore mudflats
From: Susan Myers <>
Date: Mon, 07 Jul 1997 14:49:55 +1100
Hugo Phillipps wrote:
> If we consider this area important enough to conserve for its importance to
> shorebirds alone (and I believe our report demonstrates this unambiguously
> to all those who share a belief in the importance of conserving biological
> richness and diversity) then we still need to convince many others in the
> community with different priorities. 
Speaking of groups with different priorities I would just like to point
out one important group,namely tourism.Of all the places for a mudflat
smack bang in the middle of Cairns would have to be the worst.This city
is sold to thousands of tourists a year as a paradise on earth.They are
promised beaches like those of the Maldives or Tahiti. They believed it
for a while but you can't fool all the people all the time and now
they've stopped coming.For the first time in over a decade the growth
rate of the Japanese sector of the market has fallen below double
figures. This is the largest part of Australia's largest industry and
nobody was warned.They really believed it would grow forever!Given that
Cairns is built on tourism,simply speaking without it Cairns would not
exist, this is a big problem.In the current climate many people in
Cairns will soon be getting desperate,if they aren't already.
Unfortunately,what they percieve as a bunch of useless boring,brown
birds will not receive much sympathy from the people of Cairns who rely
on Japanese tourism,which is just about everyone,I imagine.Already a
Tokyo-Cairns route has been cancelled,and more will follow.This will
directly hurt a lot of Cairns people.I think we have a real fight on our
hands if we want to save this fantastic spot and it can only be done by
making it an attraction not a drawback,as Richard says.In the past when
these plans have been knocked on the head the situation has been very
different-that is,money was being made;now it's being lost I'm afraid it
will be a whole new ball game.Is it possible to get the tourism gurus to
put shots of waders on mudflats in their brochures in place of
immaculate white beaches & unnaturally blue seas......
Susan Myers

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