July 31 marks the annual celebration of World Ranger Day. We’d like to take this opportunity to ‘tip the hat’ to the leaders who protect our planet’s life support systems every day. Rangers are Mother Nature’s first responders. We need them and they need our support more than ever.
We Stand With Rangers - Kooma Aboriginal Ranger Geoffrey sharing stories about an incredible traditional water well on Murra Murra Station (Photo: Charles Davidson)
Consider a couple of stats:
According to the World Economic Forum, the “ economic impact of protected areas like national parks on peoples’ mental health is $6 trillion per year worldwide.”
In Australia’s southeast state of Victoria, “the avoided healthcare costs and productivity impacts associated with undertaking physical activity regularly in Victorian parks could be up to $200 million per annum.”
Based on these figures, the future management of national parks is likely to see as much input from environment ministers as from health and finance ministers. Land managers are in the very early days of quantifying the true value ecosystem services but as the limitations of ecotourism supporting national parks appear, there’s a clear need to diversity. We simply cannot avoid for Indigenous, community and government rangers not to be on the ground and water.
COVID-19 has threatened the livelihoods of rangers around the planet, so too the livelihoods of threatened wildlife and by default our collective mental and physical wellbeing. Through our working relationship with The Thin Green Line Foundation we’ve also come to see the competitive advantage of our team’s background in nature-based professions in a completely new light.
Standing at the summit of Mt Ossa, Tasmania's tallest peak (1617m), during my time as a guiding the Cradle Mountain Huts Walk with the Tasmanian Walking Company.
Convention would ask why you would choose a business consultancy run by professionals with career backgrounds in gardens, farms, national parks and wildlife sanctuaries? However, one could just as rationally ask why would you trust anyone else? Especially if you’re serious about risk mitigation.
As the gaps between nature, wellbeing and trade closes, we’re realising that business without an understanding of the land is blind. At Regeneration Projects, it is because we work closely with rangers and tour guides we bring more value to our urban-based clients.
A final note, to past guests who I had the pleasure of guiding along Tasmania’s majestic larapuna / Bay of Fires or Overland Track, I look forward to catching up soon. This time I’ll be wearing my business attire rather my hiking boots. Let’s set off on a new journey together, towards regeneration!