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Wednesday, 16 August 2017
Page: 5839


Senator RHIANNON (New South Wales) (15:44): I move:

That the Senate—

(a) notes that:

   (i) earlier this year the New South Wales (NSW) Government released a range of draft regulations and instruments to support two laws that cover how biodiversity, 'offsetting' and land-clearing are assessed in rural and urban areas,

   (ii) the NSW Government plans for these biodiversity and land-clearing changes to commence on 25 August 2017, and

   (iii) the NSW Environment Defenders Office in its submission to the NSW Government on this issue pointed out that:

(A) the Biodiversity Offsets Scheme will not meet federal standards in the Commonwealth Offsets Policy under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999, and

(B) where Local Land Services (LLS) consider that proposed clearing may require Commonwealth approval, LLS will only certify the clearing after being reasonably satisfied by the landowner that Commonwealth approval is unnecessary or approval has been granted; and

(b) calls on the NSW Government to delay setting a commencement date until all the mapping required to be able to make decisions about land-clearing and offsets is accurately and comprehensively completed, and NSW offsets under the Commonwealth policy meet Commonwealth standards.