Minimal Impact Code

What This Centre Believes:

Tinaroo Environmental Education Centre teaches students about enjoying and caring for the environment. When we are away from the centre doing an activity, we believe it is important that you do not leave any waste behind or you do not damage the environment in any way. We want you to look after the environment the best that you can. 

We agree with the 'Leave No Trace' ideal that says:

  • Leave only footprints

  • Capture only photographs
Take home only memories


  • In our world today there is an increasing use of the outdoors for recreation – there is a much greater number of people out hiking, canoeing, camping, visiting National Parks than ever before. We all enjoy getting out and seeing and enjoying the natural environment so there is much more chance that our campsites will become bare and ‘rubbished’, our waterways will become polluted, our plants and animals affected by humans and our walking tracks eroded and degraded. 

  • We are ‘loving our environment to death’.

  • We all need to adopt a code of practice – a way of behaving, that will help preserve the natural environment. We need to use ‘Minimal Impact’ practices that will help in that preservation.

  • We call this ‘walking softly’ on the environment.
  • Do you already make sure that you leave minimal evidence of having been in the bush? 

What do you do to minimize your impact?


  • When possible use tracks, roads or trails that already exist rather than making a new one.
Try not to cut corners which helps cause erosion.

Plants and Animals.

  • Try not to damage any trees or plants.

  • Leave all trees standing – they provide homes and shelter for animals, birds and insects.
Care for animals and their homes – we share the bush with them – that is their home.

  • Be careful you do not frighten animals. 

Waste / Rubbish.

  • Take home or carry out all waste ( including food scraps) with you from a camping site – do not bury the waste.

  • Minimize the packaging for food that you carry – means you have less to carry out.
* Pick up and carry out if possible any rubbish left behind by careless visitors.

Human Waste.

  • If you need to go to the toilet, then dig a hole ( at least 20 cm) deep and at least 50m from any waterway. Make sure you carefully cover the hole and compact the soil on top.

  • Use existing toilets if they are provided.

Fires and Cooking.

  • Use an existing fireplace or fire drum when lighting a fire.
  • Keep the fire small.
  • Make sure you bring in your own wood for the fire – do not collect from the surrounding forest.

  • Remember that fires are banned from National Forests and Wet Tropics areas

  • If you have built a fire on the ground, ensure the ashes are completely extinguished and then scatter them into the surrounding bush.

  • Use a fuel stove ( such as a trangia or gas stove) whenever possible for cooking.


  • Camp only in existing sites – try not to make new sites.

  • Digging trenches around tents encourages erosion and weeds to occupy the disturbed ground.

  • Try to leave no evidence of your visit.

Project Waterways.


Using soaps, toothpaste and detergents in waterways is harmful to water life and encourages algal growth which is harmful to plants and animals.
  • Carry water at least 50m from a waterway if you want to wash-up or clean your teeth.
  • Have a bath using a bucket of water at least 50m away from a waterway. 

Consider Others.

  • Always leave campsites better than you found them.

  • When sharing campsites, respect others and keep your noise down so as not to disturb.

Your Commitment.

  • If you are visiting our centre, we expect that you will carefully follow our Minimal Impact Code. One of the conditions under which we provide you with educational opportunities, is that you make a commitment to maintaining our belief that we all should make an effort to ‘walk softly’ on our planet.