Bill sets future for NT
parks | Tropical science hub | Military and the environment | Greenhouse monitor tools | NRM
reforms | More information |
THE Northern Territory Parliament recently passed the Parks and
Reserves Framework for the Future Bill that aims to provide a
framework for settling Aboriginal land and native title issues in
relation to a large number of the Territory’s parks and
reserves. The Bill follows the uncertainty surrounding the future
of NT’s national park estate after the 2002 High Court
The decision meant that the declaration of 49 Territory parks
and reserves was invalid, that 11 could be subject to claim under
the Land Rights Act and all NT parks could also be subject to
native title claims—including compensation claims.
A series of fundamental principles underpinning the new
- all Territory Parks and Reserves will remain accessible to all
people on a no-fee no-permit basis;
- current mining and exploration leases and applications and
tourism operator concessions are guaranteed;
- a parks masterplan will be developed to expand and more
effectively manage the parks’ estate.
NEW funding of $40 million will support world-class research on
the Great Barrier Reef and tropical rainforests. The funding
will be provided under the Commonwealth Environment Research
Facility (CERF) that is aimed at creating national research
hubs and building critical mass in areas of Australia’s
environmental research strengths and national research priorities.
CERF specifically supports proposals that demonstrate strong public
Funding of $3 million will initially be provided in
2005–06 to establish the Marine and Tropical Sciences
Research Facility and to consolidate the work of the
Cooperative Research Centre (CRC) for the Great Barrier Reef
and the CRC for Tropical Rainforest Ecology and
THE way environmental aspects of major military training
exercises will be assessed is set to change. Under the current
system, each time Defence conducts a major exercise that may
have a significant impact on the environment it is referred to
Senator Campbell under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity
Conservation Act 1999 (EPBC Act).
The new arrangement will seek to address all the environmental
requirements covered under the EPBC Act, so that future
exercises will not need to be referred to the Environment and
Heritage Minister if they meet agreed requirements.
Terms of Reference are available in the Strategic Assessments
section, Dept Environment & Heritage website, see link
TWO new products from the Australian Greenhouse Office aim
to help land managers monitor the effects of land use practices on
greenhouse gas emissions. The National Carbon Accounting
Toolbox and Data Viewer can be used on the
user’s own computer.
The National Carbon Accounting Toolbox will help
answer questions such as whether plans for planting trees to
stabilise soils, protect water quality and provide habitat will
also help reduce the amount of greenhouse gases released into
the atmosphere. The Toolbox , available on CD, provides
ready access to the advanced computer modelling used in the
National Carbon Accounting System.
The Data Viewer , available on DVD, contains a unique
30-year visual record of landscape and vegetation change in
Australia since 1972 generated from satellite images.
The viewer provides access to climate statistics for specific
regions, including average rainfall and temperature
trends over that time.
For more details on the National Carbon Accounting
Toolbox or to order free copies, see details below.Note the
Toolbox comes with the Data Viewer DVD
Also see Savanna Links , Issue 29, Landscape change
history on view , see publications link below.
A REVIEW of National Competition Policy (NCP) reforms undertaken
by the Productivity Commission has recommended a new reform
approach to natural resource management issues including water
reform, greenhouse gas abatement and management of
biodiversity and native vegetation.
The Commission found that the benefits of NCP greatly outweighed
the costs, and it has helped to meet some environmental goals,
including the more efficient use of water.
The Commission has called for a new reform program, ideally
coordinated by COAG, which would, amongst other things, build
on the National Water Initiative to enhance water allocation and
trading regimes and to better address negative
From EnviroInfo 28 April 2005