Reports

The Native Vegetation Act 2003 and the Native Vegetation Regulation 2013 were repealed on 25 August 2017. For information on the new arrangements for managing native vegetation, visit the Land Management website.

NSW Report on Native Vegetation 2014-16 is the sixth report to be released and combines 4 major reports relating to native vegetation management in New South Wales. These are the:

  • Native Vegetation Report Card
  • Private Native Forest Report Card
  • NSW Woody Vegetation Change Report Card 2013-2015
  • Compliance and Enforcement Report Card.

The Native Vegetation Report Card provides the latest information on the conservation, restoration, management and approvals for clearing native vegetation across New South Wales.

Key statistics from the most recent year show that nearly 144,000 hectares of native vegetation were conserved or improved across the state. Around 7400 hectares were approved to be legally cleared where environmental values were maintained or improved through mechanisms such as the use of offsets over the same period.

The Private Native Forest Report Card discusses land managed under Private Native Forest (PNF) Property Vegetation Plans (PVPs). Over 51,600 hectares of land were approved during 2015-16 to be managed under PNF PVPs.

The NSW Woody Vegetation Change Report Card 2013-15 covers losses in woody vegetation due to clearing for agriculture, forestry and infrastructure activities. The total reduction in woody vegetation in New South Wales from these activities during 2014-15 was 33,300 hectares or 0.04% of the area of New South Wales. The report also includes losses in woody vegetation resulting from bushfires. However, the report does not identify gains in woody vegetation due to planting and natural regrowth.

The Office of Environment and Heritage (OEH) and the NSW Environment Protection Authority (EPA) are responsible for implementing a credible compliance and enforcement framework to protect the environmental values of native vegetation and ensure that landholders who comply with the law are not disadvantaged.

OEH and EPA undertake this role through stakeholder engagement, strategic investigations, appropriate enforcement actions and targeted compliance campaigns. The Compliance and Enforcement Report Card provides information on OEH compliance and enforcement activities. The EPA's activities are included in the PNF Report.

The 2014-16 report demonstrates that extensive areas of native vegetation are being actively managed and conserved by farmers and rural landholders who understand the value in conserving remnant vegetation.

Previous versions of the report are available at the bottom of this webpage.

Accompanying native vegetation data spreadsheet

The report is being released with accompanying data (XLS 394KB). This is provided in spreadsheet form and displays the comprehensive data used to develop the report. This includes historical Landsat data from 1998 to 2011 and more recent SPOT 5 data from 2009 to 2015. The spreadsheet provides woody change data as detected by Landsat and SPOT 5 at the local government (LGA), local land service (LLS), catchment management authority (CMA), interim biogeographic regionalisation of Australia (IBRA) region level. Woody change data detected by SPOT 5 in relation to Keith Vegetation Formations is also provided.

Woody vegetation change data is derived from analysis of satellite images using the Statewide Landcover and Tree Survey (SLATS) Methodology and used to report against several national and statewide programs. The information provided allows users the opportunity to access the raw data that supports the figures included in the various reports on native vegetation.

In accessing and analysing the information provided, it is important to realise the following:

  • Woody vegetation changes do not consider regrowth or replantings.
  • The figures do not distinguish between approved, permitted, exempt or illegal clearing under the repealed Native Vegetation Act 2003.
  • Since clearing authorised in one year may not happen in that year, clearing rates and PVP approvals data cannot be aligned.

Woody vegetation change

These figures are derived from the analysis of Landsat satellite woody change data (25m) for 1988-90 to 2010-11 and SPOT 5 (5m) data 2009-10 to 2014-15. More information on access to these and other spatial data products can be found on the Ancillary Vegetation Products: Data Inventory page.

Woody vegetation change measurements from Landsat and SPOT 5 imagery are not directly comparable due to the different resolution of the sensors. When analysing trends in woody vegetation change SPOT 5 and Landsat measurements should not be directly compared. The report A Comparison of Woody change Mapping based on SPOT 5 and Landsat TM Imagery using 2010-2011 Imagery (PDF 1.3MB) provides further information.

Woody vegetation extent

Woody vegetation extent differs slightly as a measure of vegetation from woody vegetation change. Woody vegetation extent measures Foliage Projective Cover (FPC) which is used across many Australian vegetation classification frameworks. For this data, FPC refers to the vertically projected percentage cover of photosynthetic foliage from tree and shrub life forms only.

The distribution of woody FPC by catchment management authority and IBRA region are published in the spreadsheets below. The counts of woody vegetation for each FPC value were derived from the Landsat woody extent and FPC v2.1 2008 product. The cell value in the spreadsheets is FPC plus 100, e.g. 110 represents an FPC of 10. The cell size is 25m x 25m. These data were not included in the Native Vegetation Report, but are reported here as part of the Natural Resource Commission's auditing of the state's commitments to natural resource management embedded in the State Plan.

More information on this and other spatial data products can be found on the Ancillary Vegetation Products: Data Inventory page.

The woody vegetation extent data and FPC 2008 product is published below for each IBRA and CMA region in New South Wales as Excel spreadsheets. It is not included in the Native Vegetation Report but is reported here as part of the Natural Resource Commission's auditing of the state's commitments to natural resource management embedded in the State Plan.

Click on the CMA region below to download the data for that region:

Border Rivers – Gwydir CMA

(XLS 25KB)

Central West CMA

(XLS 25KB)

Hawkesbury-Nepean CMA

(XLS 25KB) 

Hunter Central Rivers CMA

(XLS 25KB)

Lachlan CMA

(XLS 25KB)

Lower Murray-Darling CMA

(XLS 17KB)

Murray CMA

(XLS 17KB)

Murrumbidgee CMA

(XLS 17KB)

Namoi CMA

(XLS 17KB)

Northern Rivers CMA

(XLS, 17KB)

Southern Rivers CMA

(XLS 17KB)

Sydney Metropolitan CMA

(XLS 17KB)

Western CMA

(XLS 17KB)

   

Click on IBRA region below to download the data for that region:

Australian Alps

(XLS 17KB)

Brigalow Belt - South

(XLS, 25KB)

Broken Hill Complex

(XLS, 25KB) 

Channel Country

(XLS 17KB)

Cobar Peneplain

(XLS 25KB)

Darling Riverine Plains

(XLS 25KB)

Mulga Lands

(XLS 25KB)

Murray Darling Depression

(XLS 25KB)

Nandewar 

(XLS 25KB)

New England Tablelands

(XLS 25KB)

NSW North Coast

(XLS 25KB)

NSW South Western Slopes

(XLS 26KB)

Riverina

(XLS 25KB)

Simpson - Strzelecki Dunefields

(XLS 25KB)

South East Corner 

(XLS 25KB)

South Eastern Highlands*

(XLS 25KB)

Southern Eastern Queensland

(XLS 25KB)

Sydney Basin 

(XLS 25KB)

 *Please note the South Eastern Highlands IBRA region file does not include land within the Australian Capital Territory.

Previous reports

Page last updated: 17 August 2018