TALK TACTICS: Mayor Tony Wellington, CEO Brett de Chastel and councillors meet with Tourism Noosa board directors and CEO Damien Massingham.
TALK TACTICS: Mayor Tony Wellington, CEO Brett de Chastel and councillors meet with Tourism Noosa board directors and CEO Damien Massingham. Paul Smith

Looking after the locals for tourism sustainability

RESIDENT amenity as well as business needs will be addressed as the council and Tourism Noosa look to forge a sustainable tourism approach to stop us being loved to death.

The two groups including the Mayor Tony Wellington, council CEO Brett de Chastel and Tourism Noosa's chair Steve McPharlin and CEO Damien Massingham, have met in council chambers this week to discuss how to best balance these competing needs.

"There has been a good deal of attention paid to matters related to sustainable tourism, particularly in areas such as council's transport strategy and events permits,” Cr Wellington said.

"Our responsibility as a local council is to both residents and businesses in the shire. We do need to consider resident amenity as well as business needs.

"It's always going to be a balancing act, and I'd like to think that, working together, we can get that balance right.”

Cr Wellington said local tourism benefits includes the many thousands employed in the sector as well as the considerable support services.

"Being a strong destination for tourism has a range of benefits in terms of options for residents, whether that be business opportunities or participation in events and other experiences,” he said.

"But we do need to be aware of the occasional impacts as well, and do our best to mitigate those repercussions.”

The mayor said both groups want to "take a more holistic view of tourism”.

He said ongoing sustainability discussions will involve more than just council and Tourism Noosa with community representative organisations as well as individuals to be consulted.

"In a way, more money flowing into our local economy from tourists is a better problem to have than a shrinking local economy and lack of success.”

Mr McPharlin is keen to see tourism help shape a sustainable future for Noosa.

"It underpins our key goals, being to focus on value over volume by targeting high-yielding visitors, particularly from interstate and international markets, along with spreading the benefits across our region,” he said.

Mr McPharlin said his organisation respects the "wider views from those not directly engaged in the tourism sector”.


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