What do you need to know and who do you contact when an issue of environmental destruction confronts you?
- Who can help you make wise choices about improvements to your own way of living to help the planet?
- This page will provide contact details and roles of agencies; advice, and links to expert information on the main areas.
- Underlying these formal links is the hope that our own community becomes the exemplar, and can share such progress with all.
- ECOLOGICAL SUSTAINABILITY
- Land and Water Management for biodiversity
Australia’s Biodiversity Conservation Strategy 2010-2030 (referred to as ‘the Strategy’) is a guiding framework for conserving our nation’s biodiversity over the coming decades.
The vision of this Strategy is that Australia’s biodiversity is healthy and resilient to threats, and valued both in its own right and for its essential contribution to our existence.
Biodiversity, or biological diversity, is the variety of all life forms. There are three levels of biodiversity:
- genetic diversity—the variety of genetic information contained in individual plants, animals and micro-organisms
- species diversity—the variety of species
- ecosystem diversity—the variety of habitats, ecological communities and ecological processes.
Australia’s biodiversity is under threat
In Australia, more than 1,700 species and ecological communities are known to be threatened and at risk of extinction. Degradation of our environment continues and many ecosystems are increasingly vulnerable to collapse. Our biodiversity is declining because of the impacts of a range of threats, including:
- habitat loss, degradation and fragmentation
- invasive species
- unsustainable use and management of natural resources
- changes to the aquatic environment and water flows
- changing fire regimes
- climate change.
- Laws on protection of species and communities
Environment Defenders Office NSW (EDO NSW) has produced a number of resources on native plants and animals
Protecting Native Animals & Plants
This Fact Sheet explains the legal protections for native animals and plants in NSW. It describes the frameworks that regulate impacts on native animals and plants, and identifies the relevant decision-makers and enforcement authorities.
This Fact Sheet will be useful for people who want to know what the legal protections for native animals and plants are at a state level. It will also be useful for people who come into contact with native animals and plants, and people who are concerned about breaches of environmental law.
Threatened Species & Ecological Communities
This Fact Sheet explains the various legal protections for threatened species in NSW and Australia. It describes the frameworks that regulate impacts on threatened species, including nomination, listing, protection, and enforcement, and identifies the authorities involved in both listing threatened species and monitoring and enforcing breaches of threatened species law.
This Fact Sheet will be useful for people who want to know what the legal protections for threatened species are at both a state and national level. It will also be useful for people who are concerned about breaches of threatened species law.
EDO NSW also undertakes law reform work relevant to native plants and animals
- Vegetation of our local region
The vegetation of much of the area in the Hawkesbury is special and unique. A vegetation community is a group of plants occurring together in a shared habitat or environment to form a characteristic type. Hawkesbury is home to at least 15 different vegetation communities, many of them based on better clayey soils derived from alluvium and shale. Over 40% of our native vegetation has been lost since European settlement, with very little native vegetation remaining within the early settled areas of our townships and good agricultural lands, where significant development has taken place.
The impact of clearing across Hawkesbury and greater western Sydney has affected some vegetation communities more than others, with some so rare that they are listed as ‘threatened ecological communities’ under the NSW Threatened Species Conservation Act 1995. Even more endangered communities are listed under the Australian Government Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 as ‘critically endangered’.
The largest area of bushland in the area is sandstone based and within management of National Parks: Wollemi and Blue Mountains (combined to form the Greater Blue Mountains World Heritage Area GBMWHA)
For more information see the vegetation maps VEG MAPS ENVT NSW CUMBERLAND PLAIN
and details of each vegetation community as listed here: (TBC)
- Wildlife of our local region
Hawkesbury is home to an amazing array of wildlife in its hinterlands and reserves, especially where bushland is still relatively intact. Koalas, flying foxes, platypus, goannas, snakes, wallabies and many species of gliders, as well as over 200 species of birds inhabit the area. They need to be protected and education about them and their habitat requirements is the best way to begin.
You can undertake your own searches at ATLAS of NSW Wildlife. The Atlas of NSW Wildlife (the Atlas) are the Office of Environment and Heritage’s (OEH’s) database of flora and fauna records. The Atlas contains records of plants, mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians, some fungi, some invertebrates (such as insects and snails listed under the Threatened Species Conservation Act) and some fish.
ATLAS OF LIVING AUSTRALIA: The Atlas of Living Australia (Atlas) contains information on all the known species in Australia aggregated from a wide range of data providers: museums, herbaria, community groups, government departments, individuals and universities.
From EDO NSW: This Fact Sheet explains what the Biodiversity Banking Scheme (BioBanking) is and how it works. It discusses BioBanking Agreements and Statements, biobank sites, and biodiversity credits. It explains how BioBanking interacts with planning legislation, as well as private and public conservation arrangements.
This Fact Sheet will be useful for landholders who are interested in finding out more about how BioBanking works, landholders who are already party to a BioBanking Agreement, and people looking to purchase a property which has a BioBanking Agreement registered on the title.
- Fire ecology
- CLIMATE CHANGE
- Current projections
- Weather extremes
- Long-term planning
- Changing energy sources
- Living sustainably- energy, food, water, travel
- Waste management
- PLANNING for OUR COMMUNITY
From the Community Charter for Good Planning in NSW, by the Better Planning Network BPN. “Our Vision : A planning system that thinks of both today and tomorrow; is built on fairness, equity and the concept of Ecologically Sustainable Development (ESD); guides quality development to the right place; ensures poorly designed developments and those in the wrong places don’t get built; and protects the things that matter, from open spaces, bushland and productive agricultural land to much-loved historic town centres and buildings.” See the full text of the Charter here http://thecommunitycharter.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/09/Planning-for-People_CHARTER-Tickbox.pdf
- Roles and responsibilities
- Strategic Land Use Planning:
Local Environment Plan (LEP)
- State Planning for future.
- Local Development Applications: Tracking System
Hawkesbury City Council’s online Application Tracking System provides searchable information about applications and certificates including Development Applications (DAs) and Construction Certificates (CCs).
- Our heritage: Aboriginal Heritage, early European Heritage
- Water supply and infrastructure
The community feels strongly about the importance of their role in securing greater Sydney’s water supply. Community consultation has also shown that a large proportion of Sydney residents think that education about sustainable water management is essential. This means that local government, non-government organisations, the NSW Government and the community together have the opportunity to work toward a sustainable water future.
- Roads and travel
- Community hubs and social integrity/cohesion??
- Development pressures and impacts
- WATER, AIR, SOIL PROTECTION
- Pollution reporting
- Sources of pollution: coal, industrial processes and materials, fuels, aviation, agricultural processes and chemicals, fires, micro-organisms
- Impacts of pollution on environment and health: asthma,
- Air quality : http://www.environment.nsw.gov.au/aqms/index.htm http://www.ansto.gov.au/AboutANSTO/MediaCentre/News/ACS049674
- Water quality: drinking, recycled, wastewater, environmental
- Drinking water from Nth Richmond supply system
- Recycling and Sewage treatment in Hawkesbury (and Syd Basin)
2010 Metropolitan Water Plan
- SOIL QUALITY
- MAKING A SUBMISSION
- WRITING TO RELEVANT CONTACTS
- LOCAL GOVERNMENT
- ELECTED REPRESENTATIVES
- STATE GOVERNMENT MINISTERS
- AUSTRALIAN GOVERNMENT MINISTERS
- OTHER POLITICAL ASSISTANCE
- OTHER ORGANISATIONS