Every visitor to Fraser Island causes more than a tonne of sand to be dislodged (mainly by vehicle tyres). This disturbed sand is subsequently relocated mainly in heavy rain with adverse environmental impacts.
FIDO has been advocating two projects to make visitation more sustainable. Since 1974, FIDO has advocated a light rail people mover to take heavy vehicles off the fragile inland sand tracks. Since 1976 FIDO has also advocated the creation of a K’Gari Track from Sandy Cape to Hook Point. The George Haddock Track is part of this long term proposal.
A Viable Light Rail Option for Fraser Island
A FIDO Background Paper
The environmental benefits of a light rail on Fraser Island in reducing surface disturbance and relocation of sand more than justify the establishment of a light rail system on Fraser Island. However, there are wins also for the comfort and amenity of the light rail users. The marketability of a light rail system which has many historic precedents on Fraser Island as well as the economies offered to the tour company which currently carries about half of the 350,000 visitors to Fraser Island each year makes it an even bigger attraction. A rail service would allow the Queensland Government to devolve itself from the expensive and increasing intractable problem of maintaining two major cross island roads.
The Case Fraser Island Light Rail Feasibility Study
First drafted in 2004 and updated February 2015
Transportation on Fraser Island has long been a concern for FIDO. The increasing size of the buses has led to widening of the roads. This has led to loss of canopy, desiccation, and erosion in heavy rainfall events. FIDO estimates that over a tonne of sand is relocated for every visitor to Fraser Island. This sand forms alluvial plumes smothering vegetation and some flows into waterways and lakes. This is unsustainable and needs to be urgently addressed.