Submission on the development of supporting regulations for the Biosecurity Act 2015

EDO NSW submission the development of supporting regulations for the Biosecurity Act 2015

5 February 2016 - Download PDF

This submission makes overarching comments relevant to any proposed regulations and discussion papers generally. It then comments on discussion papers on managing widespread pest animals, weeds, and wild dogs.

Some general comments include:

  • Shared responsibility – The principle of shared responsibility for biosecurity and development of management tools is welcome. These tools should be supported by a stronger focus on preventing new incursions to reduce overall biosecurity risks.

  • General duty – The General Biosecurity Duty is also welcome. The legislative framework needs to be supported with community education and shared management initiatives.

  • Environmental weeds – The regulations would benefit from a greater focus on environmental risks than the Discussion Papers suggest, particularly for environmental weeds and pest species (noting that many ‘key threatening processes’ to biodiversity are also biosecurity risks).

  • Compliance – Proposed management arrangements would benefit from a clear hierarchy of compliance. As well as local council officers, the Secretary should be empowered to nominate Authorised Officers to fulfil all biosecurity risk compliance duties, and the community should have rights to bring civil enforcement in court (as other laws allow).

  • Review – Biosecurity risks in NSW should be systematically reviewed and response measures should be prioritised according to risk. Rather than simply transfer existing management measures and priorities to new systems under the Biosecurity Act, a transparent, science based methodology should be established to manage risk and measure progress.