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BioMetric

BioMetric is the terrestrial biodiversity Native Vegetation Assessment Tool (NVAT) for the NSW Property Vegetation Planning System.

BioMetric helps landholders prepare property vegetation plans (PVPs) under the Native Vegetation Act 2003. BioMetric is used with:

  • a GIS tool that maps landscape features
  • other NVAT modules that assess the presence of threatened species, land and soil capability, salinity, water quality and the presence of invasive native scrub.

Information collected by all these tools is included in a PVP and stored in an administrative database called PADACS (PVPs, Agreements, Data and Customer Service).

What BioMetric does

BioMetric assesses terrestrial biodiversity at the patch, paddock or property scale. This native vegetation assessment tool:

  • assesses losses of biodiversity from proposed clearing, including ecological thinning
  • calculates gains in biodiversity from proposed offsets.

More information on assessment methodologies is available in the BioMetric Operational Manual (Version 3.1, updated February 2011) (PDF 6 MB).

What BioMetric does not do

BioMetric is not a planning tool.

BioMetric does not assess:

  • private native forestry
  • clearing for routine agricultural management activities or of regrowth
  • continuation of existing farming activities.

For information on these matters, see native vegetation management.

BioMetric is not used to assess management of invasive native scrub, which is assessed by a separate NVAT module. For more details, see Managing invasive native scrub information sheet.

BioMetric is not available as a stand-alone tool.

BioMetric Operational Manual and data sheets

The BioMetric Operational Manual (Version 3.1, updated February 2011) (PDF 6MB) includes comprehensive instructions on using BioMetric to assess impacts of vegetation management on terrestrial biodiversity.

Five sets of data sheets provide information on specific types of assessment using BioMetric. These are:

Support for BioMetric

For more information on assessment using BioMetric see the BioMetric Frequently asked questions or read Gibbons et al. 2009.

Email BioMetric Help: Bionet@environment.nsw.gov.au

  • for all other questions regarding BioMetric
  • for information on its underpinning data
  • for information on biodiversity issues relevant to the Native Vegetation Act 2003
  • to find out more about other issues related to biodiversity and vegetation condition assessment
  • if you have data or information that we could use when revising the BioMetric assessment methodology or datasets.

Datasets for BioMetric assessments

The development of BioMetric necessitated the development of three new state-wide datasets. For the latest data and more information on these, go to:

EOAM and assessment protocols

The Native Vegetation Regulation 2013 sets out an Environmental Outcomes Assessment Methodology (EOAM) that must be used to assess whether clearing proposals improve or maintain environmental outcomes. BioMetric is used with the biodiversity assessment section of the EOAM.

The Minister has approved two assessment protocols that have been developed under clause 27(3)(b) and clause 27(3A)(b) of the Native Vegetation Regulation 2005 for where a minor variation is made to the EOAM:

An accredited expert can use these two protocols to make an assessment that the proposed clearing will improve or maintain environmental outcomes and will have additional conservation benefits.

Note that the Native Vegetation Regulation (including the EOAM and assessment protocols) is currently being reviewed. Go to the review of the Native Vegetation Regulation and native vegetation for more details.

Further reading

More information on BioMetric, vegetation planning and vegetation classification is available in the publications list

Page last updated: 18 March 2015