State Government Koala Protection Amendments
On 7 February 2020 the Queensland Government introduced the Nature Conservation and Other Legislation (Koala Protection) Amendment Regulation 2020.
You can view a copy of the Act on the Queensland Government website.
This change in legislation will affect how the Planning Regulation 2017 manages and reduces the impact of development on koalas and their habitat.
It changes the process of how proposed vegetation clearing involving koala habitat is mapped and assessed.
Due to these changes, you should not rely solely on the offset estimate report.
If your development requires vegetation clearing, please call us on 07 3412 3412 or email us at Council@logan.qld.gov.au for advice.
For more information about this reform, please visit the Queensland Department of Environment and Science website.
What is an environmental offset?
An environmental offset is where we ask a property owner for compensation for the environmental impacts of their development. This compensation may be for trees to be planted in place of trees that are removed, or a financial contribution to help revegetate other land.
Environmental offset policies
An environmental offsets policy is included in the Logan Planning Scheme 2015 (Policy 3 – Environmental management). The policy identifies three types of environmental offsets:
- restoration offsets – usually apply to smaller developments where the impacts of development can be offset by planting trees on another area on the same lot
- proponent driven offsets – are usually appropriate for larger developments where there is no option to plant trees on the same lot, and the developer prefers to revegetate other land that we approve as an offset
- financial settlement offsets – can apply to any development where there is no option to plant trees on the same lot and the developer prefers to pay an amount of money for us to revegetate other land.
Does Council have any other offset policies?
Our Stormwater Quality and Flow Management Guidelines includes a stormwater quality offset.
It allows developers to make a financial contribution instead of treating their stormwater on site.
How are environmental offsets calculated?
We calculate offsets by:
- the size (in square metres) of native vegetation cleared in the primary vegetation management area
- the number of native trees and native habitat trees cleared in the secondary vegetation management area.
You can find out if an offset applies to proposed clearing, or ask for a financial settlement offset estimate though the environmental offset estimator in the Logan PD Hub. Please note that exemptions are not automatically excluded from the environmental offset estimate.
Exemptions from paying an offset
Environmental offsets will not apply to:
- building a new dwelling house or dual occupancy on an existing lot if no more than 4000m2 of native vegetation is cleared
- clearing vegetation which needs referral under the Planning Act 2016
- clearing vegetation which is exempt under the Biodiversity areas overlay code.
Reducing the cost of an offset
You may be able to reduce the costs of environmental offsets by:
- planting new trees on another part of the property
- redesigning or moving the proposed clearing site to an area of lower ecological significance (areas shown in lighter green on the Ecological Significance Map)
- if you are clearing individual trees, redesigning the proposed clearing site to keep as many trees as possible
- reducing the size of the proposed clearing site
- moving the proposed clearing site to avoid biodiversity or koala corridors and wetland or waterway buffers.
How we use funds collected as environmental offsets
We use offset funds exclusively to purchase and rehabilitate degraded land to:
- replace environmental values unavoidably lost during development
- increase and improve koala and other significant species habitat
- improve connectivity between broken and isolated areas of vegetation
- support environmental initiatives aligned to our River Recovery Program
- increase our green space and provide opportunities for eco-friendly recreational activities.
You can find more information about offset calculations: