Changes to land clearing laws in QLD

Queensland’s land clearing laws have been tightened this year, but what does that mean for you?

It is important that landowners are aware of the changes to vegetation management laws if you intend to clear vegetation on your property.
Vegetation management controls that were scrapped in 2013 have been reinstated to minimise the potential for pre-emptive clearing and to protect wildlife and reduce carbon emissions.

What could this mean for you and your land?

If you have land that was previously free of land clearing restrictions, you may find that there are now tight controls over what you can do in terms of vegetation management.
This may mean that land you previously planned on clearing may now be protected.
These laws particularly impact farmers, as they will now be required to obtain approval under the EPBC Act to thin vegetation, if it is proposed that clearing could have a significant impact on the environment.
Land that has not been cleared for 15 years (previously 29) on freehold land will now be considered “high value regrowth vegetation” and clearing in these areas will be prohibited.

Necessary clearing landholders can still conduct

The new laws specify that landholders can still conduct clearing that is necessary for farm operations and property management including:
Preparation for natural disasters

  • Weed control
  • Encroachment management
  • To establish property infrastructure
  • Continue to harvest fodder for drought (but you need to re-notify your intent to clear)

Prior to conducting any clearing it is important and recommended to check if there have been conservation class of vegetation changes to your land. You can find free vegetation and property maps here.
You can find details of the changes and how they apply to you here.
References:
https://www.qld.gov.au/environment/land/vegetation/clearing
https://www.qld.gov.au/environment/land/vegetation/map-request
https://www.dnrme.qld.gov.au/land-water/initiatives/vegetation-management-laws

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