Licence to harm a threatened species, population or ecological community

Are you aware of upcoming changes to wildlife licensing?


The Biodiversity Conservation Act 2016 is scheduled to commence from 25 August 2017.

Existing wildlife licence classes, conditions and fees will remain in place after the Act begins.

Proposed changes to wildlife licensing under the new Act will be exhibited for public comment in the second half of 2017. These changes are expected to be taken up during 2018.

Learn more about the wildlife licensing reforms.

A licence may be required under section 91 of the Threatened Species Conservation Act 1995 if an action is likely to result in:

  • harm to, or picking of, a threatened species, population or ecological community;
  • damage to critical habitat; or
  • damage to a habitat of a threatened species, population or ecological community.

Applying for a section 91 licence

How OEH processes licence applications

When OEH receives a section 91 licence application form, we will assess the proposed action to determine whether it is likely to have a significant impact on threatened species in accordance with the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979. There are a number of possible outcomes:

  1. OEH could determine that the proposed action is not likely to significantly affect threatened species, populations or ecological communities, and could issue a certificate to this effect under section 95 of the Threatened Species Conservation Act.
  2. OEH could grant a licence under section 91 of the Threatened Species Conservation Act, with or without conditions, if the proposed action:
    • is not likely to have an adverse effect on a threatened species, population or ecological community, such that a viable local population of the species is likely to be placed at risk of extinction.
    • is not likely to damage or have an adverse effect on a critical habitat.
  3. If OEH determines the proposed action is likely to have a significant effect on threatened species populations or ecological communities, a species impact statement will be requested when making a licence application determination.


  4. OEH could refuse the application.

Some applications can take longer to process than others, due to the nature of the proposed actions. Applications being processed are marked as 'pending' in the public register (see below).

Public register

View the section 91 public register to see scanned copies of all applications, licences and certificates. A hard copy of this register is also available in the OEH library at our Sydney CBD Head Office.

More information

To find out more about section 91 licences and the licence application process:

Page last updated: 09 August 2017