Indigenous Land and Culture

Ensuring the protection of iconic natural areas and cultural values.

Don Henry leads this project, collaborating with Aboriginal Traditional Owners and indigenous leaders in the implementation of the Cape York Peninsula Tenure Resolution Program, ensuring the protection of iconic natural areas and cultural values.

Return of the lands to indigenous traditional owners, with their consent and leadership, is an important part of protecting Australia’s cultural values and environmental heritage. Don Henry has been working jointly with indigenous groups to analyse and make recommendations for the future, based on the land tenure resolution program that has unfolded over the last 15 years on Cape York Peninsula.

Over 3 million hectares of country has been purchased from voluntary sellers and returned to traditional owners who have established new Aboriginal National Parks to protect culturally significant sites across many of these lands.

Land management regimes have been put in place and jobs generated through an indigenous ranger program. Much needs to be learned from these communities and more needs to be done on Cape York to meet Aboriginal Traditional Owner aspiration and sustainability of indigenous culture.

Project lead

Prof Don Henry
Enterprise Professor of Environmentalism
University of Melbourne