09 Jul 2015
Draft amendments to South East Queensland Koala Conservation SPRP
by Trina Gledhill, Karen Trainor
Site design must avoid clearing non-juvenile koala habitat trees in certain listed areas.
The Department of Environment and Heritage Protection is calling for written submissions on draft amendments to the South East Queensland Koala Conservation State Planning Regulatory Provisions (Koala SPRP). Although "draft", the amendments took effect on 26 June 2015.
The amendments reflect the Environmental Offsets (Transitional) Regulation 2014 (Qld), which expired on 1 July 2015. This changed the assessment criteria for assessable development under relevant provisions of the Koala SPRP.
The draft amendments to the Koala SPRP require that site design avoid clearing non-juvenile koala habitat trees in certain listed areas, with any unavoidable clearing minimised and offset under the Environmental Offsets Act 2014 (Qld). Under the previous Koala SPRP, unavoidable clearing was to be minimised and offset at a ratio of five new koala habitat trees for every one non-juvenile koala habitat tree removed, or an equivalent cash contribution.
The amendments do not address certain out-of-date provisions of the Koala SPRP, such as references to "significant projects" under the State Development and Public Works Organisation Act 1971 (Qld) and the now repealed State Planning Policy 2/07 relating to protection of extractive resources.
Submissions on the draft amendments to the Koala SPRP are due to the Department by 5pm on 17 August 2015.