Extension for the Biodiversity Conservation Regulation 2017

Recently there has been an extension provided as a result of the new legislation which was implemented on the 25th of August 2017 in relation to the implementation of the Biodiversity Conservation Act and the Biodiversity Assessment Method Implementation time period.  The details of these extensions are detailed below.  This will provide developers of land more time for lodgement of Development Applications in relation to addressing the Ecological Assessments and Flora and Fauna Assessments that are required under the Biodiversity Conservation Act.  This extension grants provisions for new or existing applications to be assessed under Part 4 of the EPA&A Act.  This provides extensions until 25th August 2018 for the following designated local government areas

  • Camden,
  • City of Campbelltown,
  • City of Fairfield,
  • City of Hawkesbury,
  • City of Liverpool,
  • City of Penrith and
  • Wollondilly

We are here to assist our clients meet their time and development objectives by providing timely and profession service in relation to Flora and Fauna Assessments, Species Impact Statements and Biodiversity Offsets through the Biodiversity Assessment Method.  We provide Biodiversity Development Assessment Reports for our clients to assist in determining offsets required for the removal of listed vegetation and threatened species or their habitats

“The Minister for the Environment has made an amendment to the Biodiversity Conservation (Savings & Transitional) Regulation 2017 (BC (S&T) Regulation). The amendment extends to 6 months from commencement of the Biodiversity Act 2016 the period for which former planning provisions apply to local developments across the State. The amending regulation can be viewed online https://www.legislation.nsw.gov.au/regulations/2017-663.pdf and a summary of the key elements is provided below.

Transitional arrangements will continue to apply to activities under Part 5 of the EP&A Act, major projects and mining projects as outlined in the BC (S&T) Regulation.

Former planning provisions continue to apply

  • New applications for development consent or modifications to an approved development under Part 4 of the Environmental Planning & Assessment Act 1979 (EP&A Act) (not including State Significant Development) will continue to be assessed under former planning provisions until 25 February 2018 in most local government areas.
  • In the seven local government areas identified as Interim Designated Areas – Camden, City of Campbelltown, City of Fairfield, City of Hawkesbury, City of Liverpool, City of Penrith and Wollondilly – new applications for development consent, or modifications to an approved development, under Part 4 of the EP&A Act will continue to be assessed under the former planning provisions until 25 August 2018.”
  • The Minister for the Environment will have until 25 February 2018 to declare additional Interim Designated Areas.
  • An amendment to the Biodiversity Conservation Regulation (Savings and Transitional) 2017 (BC (S&T) Regulation) is proposed to give effect to the intended policy that biodiversity impacts are only offset once.  OEH will keep stakeholders informed of the timing of this amendment.

Land Clearing Laws Overturned in the NSW Land and Environment Court


The NSW Land and Environment Court on Friday declared the government’s Land Management (Native Vegetation) Code 2017 to be “invalid and of no effect”.  The Court order means that any clearing that has been done under the invalid code since August 25, 2018 is actually unlawful,” the Environmental Defenders Office NSW said in a statement. Documents filed with the court in November 2017 by the NSW Nature Conservation Council argued Gabrielle Upton, the state’s environment minister, “failed to adequately consider the principles of ecologically sustainable development” as required by law when making the codes.

Secondly, it argued Niall Blair, primary industries minister, failed to obtain agreement from Ms Upton before making the laws.

Source: https://www.smh.com.au/environment/conservation/bungled-nsw-new-land-clearing-laws-deemed-invalid-by-court-20180309-p4z3lf.html

What is a Flora and Fauna Report or Ecological Assessment Report ?

As Ecologists (Ecological Consultants) based in Sydney and servicing our clients throughout New South Wales, we are often asked by our clients what is an Ecological Assessment Report ? (Flora and Fauna Report, Ecological Assessment, 5 Part Test of Significance, Biodiversity Development Assessment Report) ?.  Basically, these are reports which a government authority (often a council) requests to provide information relating to the fauna and flora habitat values on a property along with the potential impacts from an activity such as a land development.  At Anderson Environmental Pty Ltd we are qualified and experienced ecologists with experience undertaking Flora and Fauna Assessments and Ecological Assessments since 1992 and these have been undertaken for almost every purpose imaginable including: residential and rural residential subdivisions, powerline construction, water pipelines, mapping of threatened flora and fauna habitats, water catchment biodiversity surveys, mining impact assessment, land re-zonings and for bushland management.  These ecological reports have many names including;

  • Flora and Fauna Assessment Report (7 Part Test of Significance – now the 5 Part Test of Significance)
  • Flora and Fauna Report
  • Ecological Assessment Report
  • Biodiversity Assessment Report
  • Bushland Assessment Report
  • Ecological Impact Assessment
  • Flora and Fauna Impact Assessment

With the recent change in legislation however with the implementation of the Biodiversity Conservation Act (BC Act 2016) and the Biobanking Assessment Methodology (BAM) the reports are now titled:

  • Biodiversity Development Assessment Report (BDAR) – these are undertaken to assess the impacts of a development on a development site. They assess the ecological values and provide a credit calculation of how many offset credits are required (if applicable).
  • Biodiversity Stewardship Assessment Report (BSAR) – these are undertaken to assess the values of a site, often a site which is to be proposed to be used as an offset. They calculate the credits for species and ecosystems on the site.  These were formerly call Biobanking Sites.
  • Biodiversity Certification Assessment Reports (BCAR) – these are often undertaken for strategic assessments of lands and changes in land use.

We are fully qualified and accredited Biobanking Assessment Method Assessors (BAM Assessors) accredited and licensed by the NSW Office of Environment and Heritage (NSW).  We are qualified to undertake Biodiversity Development Assessment Reports (BDAR), Biodiversity Stewardship Assessment Reports (BSAR) and Biodiversity Certification Assessment Reports (BCAR).

For more information please visit the link below or feel free to give us a call on 1300 302 507 or contact us through our contact page of our website – www.andenviro.com.au


What is a Vegetation Management Plan (Bushland Management Plan) ?

A Vegetation Management Plan (VMP) is often required when developing land or when undertaking activities close to a drainage line.  The purpose of a Vegetation Management Plan or Bushland Management Plan is to provide active management actions for the management of vegetation for conservation purposes to improve its integrity and viability.  Often they are written to offset clearing and maintain and improve vegetation to reduce environmental impacts including erosion and its impacts on water quality.  At Anderson Environmental Pty Ltd we have been providing Vegetation Management Plans since 1992 when we first started working in Mining Rehabilitation.  Vegetation Management Plans are undertaken in accordance with local and state guidelines.  Although they are called Vegetation Management Plans we also undertake them in accordance with best practice internationally and in accordance with the principles of Ecological Restoration.  Ecological Restoration includes all facets of ecosystem management and also considers fauna habitat management and restoration.  We have been leaders in this industry since 1992 as we have not just focused on “getting some plants in the ground” but have considered the ecological community present, its viability and threats and the interaction of this community and its resources to the importance of local fauna and threatened flora and fauna species, soil stability and erosion control.

Therefore, a Vegetation Management Plan or Bushland Management Plan is often requested by most Sydney and NSW Regional Councils however Vegetation Management Plans are also undertaken in Queensland and Victoria.  Most councils require a VMP to be undertaken by the developer as part of their Development Application for development sites.  Such developments which require Vegetation Management Plans or Bushland Management Plans include: land development, residential and rural residential subdivisions, extensions to dwellings, roads, powerline easements, golf courses, mining, building construction and rezoning.

We are highly experienced at writing Vegetation Management Plans and Bushland Management Plans but most importantly we are highly experienced Ecological Restoration Specialists and Bush Regeneration Specialists.  We undertake the actual work on the ground of planting, threatened flora species management, erosion control and fauna habitat creation, restoration and management.  With experience in this area since 1992 stemming from Mining Restoration and Mining Rehabilitation we have an innate understanding of soils and soil remediation, vegetation and fauna habitat and their inter-relationships and therefore we can undertake Bush Regeneration at the highest level above and beyond other providers of this service.  The advantage for our clients is savings in cost and time with high quality outputs achieved through an innate understanding of site factors and methods to achieve the required outcomes.  We are highly respected by government and councils so much so that our advice and methods has been written into many of their guidelines for undertaking Vegetation Management Plans.

In NSW any “Controlled Activity” which occurs on waterfront land or near to a creekline, river or drainage line or lake is controlled by the NSW Department of Water and it is a legal obligation under the NSW Water Management Act 2000 to prepare a Vegetation Management Plan.  This plant must be prepared in accordance with their requirements as per the link below.

Source: http://www.water.nsw.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0010/547219/licensing_approvals_controlled_activities_veg_mgt_plans.pdf