Blue Mountains City Council

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Environmental Guides

The following environmental guidelines are provided to assist in the assessment of flora and fauna on development sites, and to assist in describing their proposed management and conservation on Blue Mountains properties.

Biodiversity assessment changes
There have been changes to the way NSW Government listed threatened species and ecological communities are assessed in development applications, with the commencement of the NSW Biodiversity Conservation Act, 2016. Local Environmental Plan (LEP) environmental impact provisions still apply to ALL developments applications in the Blue Mountains. Additional assessment requirements may apply to some development applications. Council’s Development Control Plan (DCP) 2015 and Flora and Fauna Assessment Guide will soon be updated to reflect the changes. See details below.


Flora and Fauna Assessment Guidelines:

The Guidelines is a checklist to assist in the preparation of an environmental assessment for a proposed development. The relevant clauses under the Local Environmental Plan needs to be considered with respect to flora and fauna protection and management. The assessment must be undertaken by persons with experience and hold qualifications in the survey and assessment of flora and fauna. Download at right.

Vegetation Management Plan Guide:

A Vegetation Management Plan (VMP) is a map based report intended to assist the property owner or occupier in managing their development site (planned or existing) in order to ensure that existing bushland elements on their land are protected from excessive human induced disturbance. A VMP is generally a requirement on sites where there are number of environmental constraints or high level ecological values. It should contain a concise written report (Part 1) and a map or plan drawing (Part 2) of the study area. The Vegetation Management Plan Guide will assist in the preparation of a detailed vegetation management plan. Download at right.

 

Best Local Natives for Use in Bushfire Prone Areas Guide:

In the wake of bushfire, many local gardeners are looking to replant with appropriate, low flammability species. Of course, all vegetative material can burn under the influence of bush fire, but some species are simply less flammable than others. This guide provides information on best local natives to use in bushfire prone areas. Download at right.
 
Native Vegetation Mapping in the Blue Mountains 1999 - 2002
This document contains descriptions of the scheduled and non-scheduled vegetation communities identified on Council’s interactive maps. Download at right.
 

Biodiversity assessment changes
There have been changes to the way NSW Government listed threatened species and ecological communities are assessed in development applications, with the commencement of the NSW Biodiversity Conservation Act, 2016 (the Act) and supporting regulations. For more information refer to the NSW Office of Environment & Heritage website. Please note the following:

  • LEP provisions still apply to ALL development applications in the Blue Mountains
    All development applications will continue to be assessed for their environmental impact against the applicable Blue Mountains Local Environmental Plan provisions. Refer to Council’s Flora and Fauna Assessment Guide (download at right) for local (LEP) ecological assessment considerations.
  • Additional assessment requirements for some applications
    The changes require developments that exceed certain thresholds for the area, location or impact of clearing to be assessed under the new Biodiversity Offset Scheme (BOS). These thresholds can be found at the link below. In these cases, a Biodiversity Development Assessment Report (BDAR), as specified by the Act will be a submission requirement for the development application. If the Biodiversity offsets scheme is not triggered by the area or location of clearing, the test of significance detailed in section 7.3 of the Biodiversity Conservation Act 2016 must be used to determine whether a local development is likely to significantly affect threatened species. Where a significant affect is likely, the proponent must carry out a detailed assessment in relation to the identified impacts in a BDAR. Proponents may need to supply evidence relating to the triggers for the BOS threshold and the test of significance when submitting their application to Council. For more information on the BOS entry requirements please refer to the NSW Office of Environment & Heritage website.