Aussie Seaplane Business Expansion Thwarted
Environmental protection rules set in stone 37 years ago, as well as objections from the Department of Water and Environmental Regulation in Western Australia are preventing the Western Australian Seaplane Operator HORIZONTAL Falls Seaplane Adventures from opening an additional day-trip route between Perth and Mandurah. The award winning seaplane company already flies tourists from Perth to Margaret River, Rottnest Island and the Pinnacles.
Even the city of Mandurah is very supportive of the idea to add the route, knowing that Seaplane tourism would wash good money into the city’s bank accounts. City of Mandurah Mayor Rhys Williams said the City was supportive of Swan River Seaplanes.
Questioned by the local press, the mayor stated: “The City wrote to the company in June last year expressing our support of the opportunity and that we would welcome them to the region. We’re aware of a number of approval hurdles required by State Government regulations and hope they can be successfully overcome, to provide a great tourism offering in Mandurah.”
Peel Harvey Catchment Council chief executive Jane O’Malley says that the council is grateful that the Water Conservation Regulations provided such a level of protection. “Seaplanes are not appropriate because of the disturbance to birds, dolphins and people”. Additionally, the executive fears that seaplanes would compromise peoples recreational opportunities, such as bird watching.
Decisions in this case appear to be made fairly arbitrarily and without providing any real equal opportunity for all stakeholders to present facts and argue their cases. Commercial seaplane operators have conducted safe, environmentally unalarming operations next to birds, dolphins and people for decades.
Contrary to many environmental protection agencies manifested worries, nature traditionally adjusts very well to seaplanes. Further, Seaplane Tour – companies prove to add high economic value to tourist destinations.