Local Government has an essential role to play in the conservation and management of biodiversity and threatened species in NSW.
Councils manage local biodiversity through biodiversity strategies and plans, land use planning mechanisms and through actively working with their communities on projects and programs to protect biodiversity.
NSW Biodiversity Reforms
The NSW Government implemented reforms to land management and conservation in NSW. The Biodiversity Conservation Act 2016 (BCA) and the Local Land Services Act 2013 and supporting Regulations commenced on 25 August 2017.
Key components of the reform include:
- A new framework for managing native vegetation clearing
- An enhanced and strategic approach to private land conservation and threatened species conservation
- An expanded biodiversity offsetting scheme
More information is available on the Government's Land Management reform website. Some transitional arrangements also exist for some LGAs.
The Office of Environment and Heritage, Local Land Services, the Biodiversity Conservation Trust and the Department of Planning and Environment each administer components of the new legislation.
Webinar on conservation agreements as conditions of consent
The Biodiversity Conservation Trust (BCT) is proposing to introduce guidelines for the use of conservation agreements as conditions of consent.
A webinar was held on 10 April 2019 to explain the content of the proposed guidelines and consult with councils on the proposed approach.
A recording of the presentation is now available.
Councils are invited to provide further comments on the proposed guideline by 29 April 2019 directly to the BCT at email@example.com.
For further information contact: Kirsty McIntyre, Senior Policy Officer – Environment, Kirsty.firstname.lastname@example.org
Biodiversity Offsets Scheme
SEPP (Vegetation in Non-Rural Areas) 2017
NSW Biodiversity Conservation Trust
Support for Local Government
Regional Local Government Support officers
The NSW Government recognises the important role of local government in the conservation and management of biodiversity and threatened species in NSW. A network of eight regionally based support officers will assist councils in transitioning and implementing the biodiversity reforms. Officer's locations and contact details are available.
Sponsored training places
OEH is sponsoring three training places for local government staff following commencement of the BCA. Sponsorship is available for both Biodiversity Approvers Standard and Extended courses. There is no limit to the number of staff that a council may seek to have trained at their own cost. More detail and register at Greencap.
NSW Legislation repealed
Legislation repealed through the reform process includes the Native Vegetation Act 2003, Threatened Species Conservation Act 1995, Nature Conservation Trust Act 2001 and parts of the National Parks and Wildlife Act 1974.
Local government biodiversity case studies