Trees and Biodiversity

Biodiversity is the variety of all life forms on earth, from the smallest plants to the largest animals. Protecting biodiversity and land resources is important in sustaining natural processes, such as nutrient cycling, soil formation and pollination. It is essential for the survival of healthy ecosystems.

Where is Biodiversity Found?

The Georges River area has a network of over 300 parks, reserves and bushland areas. These areas are home to a variety of native animals including: possums, wallabies, flying foxes, lizards, birds and fish. It is also home to many species of threatened flora and fauna.
As Australian bushland has diminished through increased urbanisation, many native animals have lost their natural homes. As a result, wildlife occasionally seeks sanctuary in homes, backyards and community spaces. Council ensures that any local activity has minimal impact on local native and vulnerable species.

Assisting in Biodiversity

We can all encourage biodiversity in our local area.  It doesn’t take much to help our local fauna and flora!

Council is undergoing various projects to assist biodiversity in our area. A free Backyard Biodiversity Guide is being developed and will be circulated across our local government area and includes information on biodiversity corridors which have been identified through the Greater Sydney Green Grid. Expansion of our urban canopy is under way through scheduled tree planting in streets and public reserves. An environmental education program is also being rolled out with numerous upcoming workshops. Check What’s On for more information.

The following tips can also help assist biodiversity in your backyard or balcony:
  • Create spaces for local native species by providing a mixed strata in your garden with sheltered hollows for insects
  • Provide drinking water in sheltered locations and ensure the water is regularly changed so that mosquitoes do not use this site to breed
  • Plant locally native shrubs and small trees
  • Leave pots, small logs and rocks around your yard to create habitat for lizards and other ground-dwelling species
  • Limit the use of chemical fertilisers and pesticides.

Biodiversity Conservation Act 2016

On 25 August 2017 the land management biodiversity conservation reforms commenced. This introduced significant changes to the way biodiversity is protected, how developmkent activities are regulated and how the impacts of these activities on the natural environment are managed.


How Might This Affect You?

If you are applying for development consent under Part 4 of the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act, your development may have impacts on biodiversity through either vegetation clearing or prescribed impacts. If these impacts occur, the Biodiversity Offsets Scheme is triggered and additional assessment will be required before development approval.

A summary of the triggers to the Biodiversity Offset Scheme are detailed below:
  1. The development is located or infringing on the Biodiversity Values Map
  2. The development exceeds the following area clearing threshold; or
  3. The impacts are considered significant under Section 7.3 of the Act

BOS Area Clearing Thresholds

Minimum lot size of land Area of clearing
Less than 1 hectare 0.25 hectare or more
Less than 40 hectares but not less than 1 hectare 0.5 hectare or more

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