Indigenous Communities

and the Environment

Indigenous Protected Area - video


Indigenous Protected Areas allow the traditional owners of the land to protect their sacred sites, landscapes and flora and fauna. Local people use traditional land management techniques, along with modern scientific techniques to manage their environment.


Indigenous Protected Areas - Environment from Parks Australia on Vimeo.



Some of Australia's rarest and most remote environments are on Indigenous-owned land.

Around the country, Indigenous communities are conserving these important landscapes - declaring them to be Indigenous Protected Areas or IPAs.

Elizabeth 'Noonie' Lulu, Paruku IPA:
I feel happy and proud that we've got a beautiful lake here, middle of the desert. My Uncle Rex Johns, he's the one that started the IPA and he wanted to protect the land.

Phil Palmer, WWF Scientist:
The traditional owners have a strong aspiration to preserve the flora and fauna of Paruku. It's unique in that it's an inland desert lake and it's a very large desert lake.

Elizabeth 'Noonie' Lulu, Paruku IPA:
It's to protect the land, to protect our sacred site and all our animals that around the lake.

Wade Freeman, Paruku IPA:
Well, the Indigenous Protection Area - it's always been part of the aspirations of the local people. They've owned this project since day one.

We're helping to protect this wetland because it's a major internationally recognised wetland for migratory birds.

Another major project is to try and protect the wetland edge from cattle and horses - feral horses are a big problem for us.  And the idea at the moment is to set up watering points back from the lake where we can start to draw cattle back and start to fence the lake area off.

As an Indigenous Protected Area it's basically a way for the local people - Warrmajary people to get control back of their land and manage it their way as they've done throughout time. Nowadays using a mixture of modern, western scientific methods of land management and traditional land management techniques.

Empowering and employing local people to work on their country, makes a lot more sense than funding experts in the city to come up here, fly in, collect a beaker of water and fly home again, when a local boy can come here and do it and send it in the mail. It is a great system and I think it's very important nationally.