Large handback welcomed as Queensland returns Jardine River National Park to First Nations ownership

The Queensland Conservation Council, today welcomed the handback of the Jardine River and Denham Group National Parks as well as part of Jardine River and Heathlands Departmental and Special Purpose Reserves to the Gudang/Yadhaykenu, Atambaya and Angkamuthi (Seven Rivers) people. 

This significant event will see a total of 362,000 hectares of land returned to First Nations ownership. Under the hand back arrangements, the land will be granted to the Ipima Ikaya Aboriginal Corporation RNTBC and the Atambaya Aboriginal Corporation on behalf of the Traditional Owners. They will take back ownership of the newly renamed Apudthama National Park  which will be jointly managed with the Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service. 

“Queensland Conservation Council strongly welcomes this handback. Returning these parks to the traditional owners is the best way to protect the area’s natural and cultural values,'' said the Queensland Conservation Council’s Director, Dave Copeman. 

“This handback and the Premier’s personal participation marks the significance of this handback to all Queenslanders. We acknowledge the government’s continued leadership in the growth and support of First Nations’ management of our protected area estate” 

“First Nations peoples hold unique knowledge and rights inherited from their ancestors and have cared for the Cape since time immemorial. We welcome the transfer of significant parts of the resource reserve to the new National Park, expanding the total National Parks area in Queensland.  

Since 1995, the Cape York land tenure resolution process has returned 4.3 million hectares of land to Aboriginal ownership. 

For more information: 

Dave Copeman - Director - Queensland Conservation Council - [email protected] 

0408 841 595