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Huge national park purchase west of Bourke

Berawinnia Creek. Photo: D Stowe/DPE

Landholder Peter Hughes, Environment Minister James Griffin, Head of NPWS Atticus Fleming. Photo: Alex Pike NSW/DPE

A vast tract of land west of Bourke has been purchased as a new national park by the NSW government.

Premier Dominic Perrottet said the 437,394-hectare site between Bourke and Tibooburra will become the third largest national park in New South Wales and a major new tourism drawcard for the region.

“This is the largest ever single parcel of land to be acquired for the national park estate in NSW,” Mr Perrottet said.

“It will provide yet another reason for people to venture out and explore this part of the state, driving tourism dollars in the region and at every stop along the way.

NSW Environment Minister, James Griffin, said the acquisition of Thurloo protects globally significant wetlands, vast outback ecosystems, and provides a haven for about 50 threatened species.

“Securing a site this big is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for the people of NSW,” Mr Griffin said.

“Protecting a property of this scale in perpetuity means we conserve bigger populations of more species, including some of the most endangered.

“What’s even more extraordinary, is that when combined with the adjacent Narrieara-Caryapundy National Park and the nearby Sturt National Park, our national parks now protect an almost completely connected area of about one million hectares west to the South Australia border.

“We want this park to be a drawcard for visitors and an asset to the entire local community. Far from keeping people out, we’ll invest in the jobs and infrastructure to welcome people in to walk, explore, camp and see what a beautiful part of the landscape it is.

“The economic benefits of this are far reaching, with our national parks contributing around $18 billion and 74,000 jobs to the State economy every year, with three quarters of that going directly to regional areas,” he said.

The National Parks and Wildlife Service will engage additional staff to manage the property and deliver $4 million in capital works to support park management and visitor infrastructure such as campgrounds, day-use areas, observation points and outback driving routes.[…]

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