Major BAM-Calculator update:
- Version 1.2 Benchmarks (all of NSW)
- Revised Plant Community Types in eastern NSW coastal and tableland bioregions
Benchmarks update from Version 1.1 to Version 1.2 and transitional arrangements
On 1 February 2023, the BAM-Calculator was updated to include Version 1.2 benchmarks.
The update to Version 1.2 benchmarks will be subject to transitional arrangements for 6 months.
Please note that the transitional arrangements for the Version 1.2 benchmarks update are separate from the transitional arrangements for changes to Plant Community Types in eastern NSW (see below).
During the designated transitional period, assessors with in-progress assessments on the date that the BAM-C Version 1.2 benchmarks update occurs may opt to manually modify benchmarks and continue to apply (the previous) Version 1.1 benchmarks. Transitional arrangements do not apply to assessments commenced after the date of the BAM-C Version 1.2 benchmarks update. New BAM assessments commenced in the BAM-C after the date of the BAM-C Version 1.2 benchmarks update must apply the new Version 1.2 benchmarks and must not modify benchmarks unless in accordance with BAM Appendix A – use of more appropriate local data.
To be eligible to apply transitional arrangements to a BAM-C case, the case must:
- be commenced prior to the date the BAM-C is updated with Version 1.2 benchmarks
- modify all benchmarks in the entire proposal to Version 1.1 benchmarks
- finalise the BAM-C assessment prior to 2 August 2023 and submit
- submit the certified Biodiversity Assessment Report (BAR) prior to 16 August 2023
- document the application of Version 1.1 benchmarks in the Biodiversity Assessment Report.
If assessors choose to apply Version 1.1 benchmarks under the transitional arrangements, the Biodiversity Assessment Report must clearly document how Version 1.1 benchmarks have been applied to the assessment and include evidence that the application is consistent with the transitional arrangements. The Biodiversity Assessment Report must include the following evidence:
- screenshots from a BAM-C case that that display the modified benchmark values to demonstrate that Version 1.1 benchmarks are applied to every benchmark value in the BAM-C case
- a URL link to the Version 1.1 benchmarks data
- an extract from the Version 1.1 benchmarks data of the relevant benchmark values for the case (for ease of review)
- evidence that the proposal was in-progress on the date the BAM-C update to Version 1.1 benchmarks.
For applications that have been assessed with Version 1.1 benchmarks under the transitional arrangements, decision-makers must ensure that the Biodiversity Assessment Report includes documentation and evidence required to be eligible.
To support transitional arrangements, Version 1.1 benchmarks will be published on the BAM-Calculator public webpage.
The Biodiversity Credit Reports (Like-for Like and Variations) generated by the BAM-Calculator will display where modified benchmarks have been used.
BAM-Calculator update to revised Plant Community Types in eastern NSW coastal and tableland bioregions and transitional arrangements
On 23 February 2023, the BAM-Calculator will be updated to include the revised Plant Community Type (PCT) classification for the NSW coastal and tablelands bioregions.
The update includes transitional arrangements for BAM-Calculator cases that are in-progress prior to the update.
The transitional arrangements are established in the BAM-Calculator and allow assessors with in-progress BAM-C assessments, in the coastal and tablelands IBRA bioregions, to maintain access to the previous version of the BAM-C data and avoid changes to assessments. Assessors with in-progress assessments on the date of the update will also have the option to apply the revised Plant Community Types to their case if preferred.
Transitional arrangements do not apply to proposals that establish a BAM-C case after the date of the BAM-C update. New BAM-C cases must apply the revised Plant Community Types and associated data to their assessments.
Assessors with proposals currently in the scoping phase or have substantially progressed preliminary survey work are encouraged to establish a BAM-C case assessment before 23 February 2023 to avoid disruptions to their existing assessment.
More details will be presented in a public webinar in early February 2023. For any questions, please contact the BOS Help Desk.
The revised Plant Community Types in eastern NSW were publicly released on 24 June 2022, giving all stakeholders access to the new scientific information in BioNet applications.
The revised Plant Community Types will be easier to use in land use decisions and biodiversity assessments and provide greater confidence, certainty, and transparency for the wide range of applications that use them in day-to-day business functions.
The revised Plant Community Type classification for eastern NSW is supported by analytical tools and maps, including the:
- Plot to PCT Assignment Tool
- BioNet Vegetation Classification Power Queries
- State Type Vegetation Map.
The revised Plant Community Types were published as part of a broader program of work – the Integrated BioNet Vegetation Data for NSW (IBVD) – that will see all Plant Community Types across New South Wales reviewed and mapped. For more information about the new data and Integrated BioNet Vegetation Data, visit the Integrated BioNet Vegetation Data for NSW webpage.
Integrated BioNet Vegetation Data for NSW
Resources and tools to support a seamless transition for users
Support tools will be provided to smooth the transition to the Scheme, including a PCT to Offset Trading Group (OTG) tool that shows the pre-eastern NSW PCTs and revised eastern NSW PCTs that can be traded within OTGs under the like-for-like offset rules. The tool will support landholders and developers to understand the application of the like-for-like offset rules in the context of both pre-eastern NSW and revised PCT biodiversity credits.
To discover which OTGs the revised PCTs belong to you can access visit the Plant Community Type to Offset Trading Group lookup tool.
Plant Community Type to Offset Trading Group tool
This webpage will be updated over time to include more information about transitional arrangements for the Scheme including; frequently asked questions (FAQs) and links to resources.
The public release of IBVD data products will include technical support tools for users to become familiar with and apply the revised PCTs, including the Plot to PCT Assignment Tool, State Vegetation Type Map products and the Trees Near Me NSW app.
Find out more
- For more information about the transitional arrangements for using the revised PCT data and the Biodiversity Offset Scheme, see the BAM Support Webinar 24 and its Questions and Answers document.
- For information about the NSW Integrated BioNet Vegetation Data (IBVD) program, visit the Integrated BioNet Vegetation Data for NSW webpage.
- Subscribe to the monthly BOS Update newsletter to be notified when more information, launch dates and support resources are released.
- The BOS Help Desk is available for ongoing support and enquiries.