Uluru is a large bright red coloured sandstone rock formation standing in the south west of the Northern Territory, Australia. It is said to have been formed around 600 million years ago and the rock is 9km in circumference and 350m tall. Also known as Ayers Rock, it is an extremely popular site for tourists all over the world. This rock has many values to the land and the people around it but is effected greatly each year by factors such as pollution and erosion from humans. There are many management programs as well as protection strategies put in place to keep this extraordinary place safe and controlled.
Uluru is quite a different shape from the top than it seems from the side.
Uluru is a joint managed area. It contains 12 members, combining Aboriginal people and people voted in from the Australian Government & Parks Australia. Uluru is a widely known as a world heritage site for it’s incredible natural and man-made features. In order for this site to stay thriving, it must be managed responsibly and respectfully to the land and its people.
STRATEGIES USED FOR MANAGEMENT AND CONSERVATION:
One main management strategy put in place is the encouragement to not climb the rock. This approach is used to show respect to the Aboriginal people who believe that the rock has very strong spritual and cultural connections to them. The aboriginal people believe that the earth was created by dream spirits who also created them and the land around them. They feel connected to the rock as they were created by the same beings, and it stands as a type of mark of their territory. By urging people to stop climbing, it symbolises consideration to the Indigenous people's beliefs. Climbing the rock would also cause a lot of erosion and breaking down of the rock if there were people walking on it everyday. This could eventually cause problems with the rock's structure and could become dangerous for animals and vegetation in terms of rock fall, etc.
The board of management have also implemented areas where nothing is able to be changed in ways such as building, and human disruption, e.g. erosion form walking and driving. This allows the animals and wildlife to live safely and happily in their natural habitat without the interference of humans. This process is working very hard to conserve the traditional and native wildlife of the area alive and having the rich culture of the land.
The board has also compacted the accommodation areas to a fairly small compound not too close to the rock. This would keep the numbers of tourists stable. They also do not allow people to camp anywhere in the desert. This shows their respect for the Indigenous people as well as for the land. By holding campers just to a relatively small campsite, it stops people from just arriving and pitching their tents wherever they feel like it.
Accommodation complex that tourists stay in.
HOW HAVE THESE STRATEGIES BEEN EFFECTIVE?
These strategies have been effective to some degree. While they are somewhat making a difference, the board of management is not necessarily being strict enough by just encouraging people not to climb the rock rather than banning it completely. There are definitely many people who are badly educated on the beliefs and values of the Aboriginal people who would still climb the rock for their own pleasure. However, by adding areas of land that must stay untouched and protected form any human contact, it keeps animals and plants alive, conserving the wildlife of the Uluru region. By restricting tourists to a small section of accomodation, it controls the amount of people eroding the land and the impact on the environment.
ULURU IN THE FUTURE:
In the future, the numbers of Uluru climbers will most likely decrease. As the rights of the Aboriginal People are still improving today, tourists will probably begin to realise that they should not violate and climb the Indigenous People's sacred landforms. Climbing may even be banned in the future for the same reason. There are not many accurate predictions of the numbers of tourists visiting Uluru in the future. It is very possible the board of management could officially allow less people in to the area, but other factors could also affect tourism. For example, during the worldwide financial crisis, the tourism numbers dropped fairly dramatically as not many people were travelling.
Past tourist numbers to Uluru
Uluru is and will always be a widely appreciated Australian landmark, loved by many people. With its rich cultural connections and amazing native wildlife, the site is somewhere appealing to many. The board of management does very well to control and protect the rock, and many changes will be made to improve even more in the near and far future.
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