Introduction

The Local Land Services Act, as amended by the Local Land Services Amendment Act 2016 (LLSA Act), provides a new regulatory framework for the management of native vegetation in NSW.

A Native Vegetation Regulatory (NVR) Map has been developed and identifies rural land that is regulated under the new land management framework. Landholders will be able to review the categories of vegetation as depicted on the regulatory map for their property. The new State Environmental Planning Policy (Vegetation) 2017 (Vegetation SEPP) will regulate clearing of native vegetation in urban and to all other land in NSW that is zoned for urban purposes or for environmental conservation/management.

The new Land Management (Native Vegetation) Code will support landholders to manage their land to ensure more productive farming methods and systems, while responding to environmental risks. Some clearing under the Land Management Code will require land to be set aside, which will be listed in a new public register. Clearing of some native vegetation may be carried out without approval for the purposes of allowable activities.

Higher impact clearing will require approval from a new Native Vegetation Panel, and landholders will be required to assess and offset the biodiversity impacts of approved clearing.

Allowable Activities

New allowable activity provisions permit the clearing of native vegetation associated with every-day land management activities, such as the construction and operation and maintenance of rural infrastructure, such as fence-lines, dams, sheds and tracks.

Allowable activity provisions also impose more transparent requirements to minimise impacts on native vegetation and, where possible, to co-locate infrastructure.

More information about allowable activities www.lls.nsw.gov.au/sustainable-land-management

Land Management Code

The new Land Management Code supports landholders to manage their land and ensure more productive farming methods and systems while responding to environmental risks.

The Land Management Code set out clearing parameters and any set-aside requirements to offset the impacts of clearing. Set-aside ratios identify how much land must be set-aside in exchange for clearing in another area of the property. Set-asides must be in additional to any publicly funded initiative, offset or existing set-aside area.

More information about the Land Management Code www.lls.nsw.gov.au/sustainable-land-management

Regulatory Map

A new Native Vegetation Regulatory (NVR) Map has been developed to underpin the new land management framework. The NVR Map shows rural land where clearing of native vegetation can occur without approval and rural land where clearing requires approval.

More information and to view the NVR map www.environment.nsw.gov.au/biodiversity/regulatorymap.htm

Regulatory Map Review

Landholders can seek an explanation report as to how the vegetation on their property was categorised. Landholders can also seek a review of their property if they consider their land has been incorrectly categorised.

More information about the explanation report and NVR map review process www.environment.nsw.gov.au/biodiversity/regulatorymapreview.htm

State Environmental Planning Policy (Vegetation in Non-Rural Areas) 2017

A new State Environmental Planning Policy (Vegetation in Non-Rural Areas) 2017 (The SEPP) will regulate clearing not covered by the Local Land Services Amendment Act 2016.

The SEPP applies to the Sydney and Newcastle metropolitan areas, and to all other land in NSW that is zoned for urban purposes or for environmental conservation/management under the Standard Instrument – Principal Environmental Plan. A full list of the Sydney metropolitan local government areas and urban and environmental conservation/management zones to which the SEPP applies can be found at www.planning.nsw.gov.au/vegetationSEPP

The SEPP regulates clearing of:

  • native vegetation above the Biodiversity Offset Scheme (BOS) threshold where a proponent will require an approval from the Native Vegetation Panel established under the Local Land Services Amendment Act 2016 and;
  • vegetation below the BOS threshold where a proponent will require a permit from Council if that vegetation is identified in the council’s Development Control Plan (DCP).

More information - www.planning.nsw.gov.au/vegetationSEPP

Native Vegetation Panel

For clearing proposals that cannot be accommodated by the allowable activities and the Land Management Code, an approval process has been established by the new Native Vegetation Panel that will enable landholders to offset the biodiversity impacts of developing their land for agriculture.

More information about the Native Vegetation Panel www.dpi.nsw.gov.au