Strategy 1 - Environment

Draft ACT Nature Conservation
Community consultation
3 September – 10 December 2012
Strategic focus
has shifted
Pre 1997
• Nature reserves for landscape
and amenity values
Post 1997
• Original NCS recognised the
need for strategic conservation
• 54% ACT in reserves
• Large remnants of Box-Gum
• New NCS aims to manage and
connect these areas
Snap shots
 “A good news story”
- 54% already in reserves (but some restoration required)
- Existing achievements in previous strategy
- Urban biodiversity and community engagement
 Focus: increasing connectivity, condition and extent of native
- Strong climate change adaptation focus
- Landscape scale planning
 Existing funding to deliver new elements
- Woodland restoration project, weeds, research funding
- funding opportunities through the Commonwealth
 The legislative framework for conservation and environment
protection in the ACT
 Nature Conservation and Urban Development
- The ACT Planning Strategy
- “The role of the Nature Conservation Strategy is to provide for the
identification of areas that are important for conservation and in
particular to provide the landscape context in which conservation,
and development, occurs”
- Decisions subject to NC Act (threatened species and communities),
P&D Act (development approval process), EPBC Act (matters of NES)
 Rural landscape
Enhance ecosystems to provide
specific services
 Water catchment landscape
Restore areas’ ability to provide clean
water and native habitat
 River Corridor landscape
Maintain water quality, vegetation and
refugia values
 Urban landscape
Enhance ‘novel’ ecosystems to provide
specific services
Nature Conservation Strategy
“Biodiversity rich, resilient landscapes stretching from the inner city to
the mountains, where well functioning ecosystems can meet the
needs of people and the environment”
Strategy 1: Enhance habitat connectivity and ecosystem
Strategy 2: Manage threats to biodiversity
Strategy 3: Protect species and ecological communities
Strategy 4: Enhance biodiversity value of urban areas
Strategy 5: Strengthen community engagement
Monitoring and review
“Reporting against targets will be aligned with the Commissioner for
Sustainability and the Environment’s State of the Environment Report”.
a) Targets related to maintaining and improve effective habitat
and biodiversity (p.21)
b) Targets related to landscapes that are more resilient,
including to climate change (p.22)
c) Targets relating to increased community health and wellbeing, including from engagement with, and appreciation of
natural areas (p.23)
Conservator will monitor effectiveness of implementation, including
Action Plans.
Strategy will be adaptive, informed by ongoing review
Positive Outlook for
 Woodland Restoration
1) ACT Woodland Restoration ($1 million/4
years/ACT Govt)
2) Restore ACT Goorooyarroo ($2.155 million/6
3) Million Trees Program
(10 year program)
 Substantial Commonwealth
Funding Sources
Section A:
Strategies and Actions
STRATEGY 1: Enhance habitat connectivity and
ecosystem function
1. Actions 1. Develop baseline information on landscape
2. Undertake fine scale planning for habitat
3. Enhance regional connectivity
4. Assess conservation investment opportunities
across public and privately managed lands in the
5. Fund priority landscape actions
STRATEGY 2: Manage threats to biodiversity
1. Implement ACT Weed Strategy (2009 – 2019)
2. Implement Pest Animal Management Strategy (2012
– 2022)
3. Manage total grazing pressure on ecosystem
function in reserves
4. Establish and implement ecologically appropriate
fire regimes
5. Better manage aquatic ecosystems
STRATEGY 3: Protect species and ecological
1. Manage the protected area estate
2. Develop, implement and review Action Plans for
threatened species and communities
3. Restoration and management of priority landscapes
4. Identifying biodiversity refugia under drought and
climate change
5. Monitor impact of climate change on native
temperate grasslands and grassy box-gum
6. Captive breeding programs and translocation
7. Propagation and translocation of threatened plants
8. Seed banks and seed orchards
STRATEGY 4: Enhance biodiversity value of urban
1. Manage impacts of urban development on
2. Manage urban open space
3. Enhancing connectivity through urban areas
4. Managing the urban edge
5. Support urban landcare and parkcare activities
6. Manage green assets and infrastructure
STRATEGY 5: Strengthen community engagement
1. Greater community involvement through
2. Enhance and promote the use of citizen science
3. Targeted community education campaigns on
priority issues
4. Build indigenous engagement in the management of
natural resources
5. Encourage the involvement of youth in nature
6. Enhance key partnerships across government,
community and the private sector
Section A:
Monitoring and review
Targets related to maintaining and improve effective habitat and biodiversity
The overall extent of lowland native vegetation across the ACT will be maintained, and
the condition of lowland native vegetation communities will be improved
 Extent of lowland native vegetation (broad measure in overall hectares, to be monitored
by vegetation community from 2013 when the revised ACT vegetation communities map
is complete).
 Condition (standard indicators to be developed nationally under the Australian Native
Vegetation Framework by 2015).
2. A measurable increase in connectivity between patches of native vegetation, non-native
vegetation in urban areas, and riverine systems
 Spatial links habitat connectivity score is above a certain measure (see Box 7) as verified
by 10 yearly on-ground assessment.
 Riverine connectivity measure (e.g. number of in-stream barriers).
Targets related to landscapes that are more resilient, including to climate
3. A reduction in threats to biodiversity from inappropriate fire regimes, weeds, pest animals
and urban development
 Abundance and distribution of priority ACT weeds (‘high’, ‘very high’ and ‘extreme’ danger
ratings) in reserves.
 Abundance and distribution of significant pest animals; significance and levels of damage
from pest animals.
 Area of reserve addressed by an appropriate fire regime that appropriately addresses
both risk to assets and ecology, in hectares.
4. Climate change refugia in the ACT are identified and appropriately managed
 Number of refugia identified and appropriately managed (maintained or enhanced).
5. Monitoring programs established in the three ACT ecosystems considered to be most
sensitive to the impacts of climate change: native grasslands; alpine bogs; and the
Murrumbidgee – Cotter River system
 Three monitoring sites established and appropriately resourced over the life of the
Targets relating to increased community health and well-being, including
from engagement with, and appreciation of natural areas
6. An increase in the area of land and volunteer effort (Parkcare, ‘Friends of’ or other
volunteer groups) in management of the Canberra Nature Park
 Total number of groups.
 Total number of ‘community work hours’ devoted to management of reserves and
other natural areas.
 Total area treated by volunteers in hectares.
7. Ten areas of conservation significance (including areas outside reserves) ‘adopted’
by ACT schools or higher learning institutions as sites for nature based education
 Number of reserves or other natural areas adopted and actively used by Schools or
higher learning institutes.
8. Increased community understanding of, and support for, the protection of the ACT’s
 Number of education campaigns delivered.
 Attitudinal surveys.

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