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Investigating the impacts of off-road vehicle activity in Broome, North-Western Australia: a preliminary appraisal.

Randall, M., Macbeth, J. and Newsome, D. (2006) Investigating the impacts of off-road vehicle activity in Broome, North-Western Australia: a preliminary appraisal. Annals of Leisure Research, 9 (1-2). pp. 17-42.

Abstract

Pristine natural areas are important leisure sites, with beaches being particularly targeted by recreational vehicles and their passengers. Coastal areas in the Broome region of Western Australia have been subject to an increasing level of leisure off-road vehicle (ORV) use by locals and tourists. The impacts of ORVs and the associated camping are noticeable on beach and fore-dune areas and include vegetation damage, litter, soil compaction, erosion and the loss of social and cultural values. This paper provides a preliminary integrated assessment of the biophysical/social issues and policy implications surrounding the present use of ORVs and free camping in the Broome region. Ghost crabs and bi-valve mollusc populations are shown to be suitable indicators of environmental impacts from ORVs on the study area’s most heavily utilised beach driving areas. Questionnaire feedback from 46 respondents relates to user demographics, perceptions of environmental impacts and management actions that address the issues of current ORV use and free camping in the study area and constitutes the basis for this paper’s analysis. Visitors are primarily undertaking nature based activities in the study area, do not perceive ORVs to be impacting key environments and show a high level of support for management actions.

Publication Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation: School of Environmental Science
School of Social Sciences and Humanities
Publisher: Australian & New Zealand Association for Leisure Studies
Publishers Website: http://www.anzals.org.au/journal/
URI: http://researchrepository.murdoch.edu.au/id/eprint/2607
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