Native vegetation removal regulations

The native vegetation removal regulations have recently been reviewed and changes have been made. Details are provided on the Review of the native vegetation clearing regulations 2015-2017 page.

Native vegetation provides habitat for plants and animals and delivers a range of ecosystem services that make land more productive and contribute to human well-being.

In Victoria, a permit is usually required to remove, destroy or lop native vegetation.  These regulations are known as the native vegetation removal regulations and are primarily implemented through local council planning schemes.

Guidelines for the removal, destruction or lopping of native vegetation (the Guidelines) outline how native vegetation removal is assessed and offset. The Guidelines are an incorporated document in all Victorian planning schemes.

Guidelines for the removal, destruction or lopping of native vegetation (DELWP 2017) (PDF 1.553 MB)

The Monitoring, evaluation and reporting plan - removal, destruction or lopping of native vegetation describes approaches used to evaluate, monitor and report on the performance of the native vegetation removal regulations.

It provides a framework for consistent and efficient data collection to:

  • measure progress towards achieving the goal of ‘no net loss’ to Victoria’s biodiversity from the removal of native vegetation
  • check operation of the regulations, and
  • identify and address gaps in our current knowledge.

Monitoring, evaluation and reporting plan - removal, destruction or lopping of native vegetation (DELWP 2018) (PDF, 410.6 KB)

The Annual report 2017-2018 - a report on the operations of the native vegetation removal regulations is the first report on the operation of the native vegetation removal regulations and presents an overview of how the review outcomes were supported and implemented during the 2017 - 2018 financial year.

Annual report 2017-2018 - a report on the operations of the native vegetation removal regulations (DELWP 2018) (PDF, 3.9 MB)

Preparing an application to remove native vegetation

The application requirements for an application to remove native vegetation depend on the application’s assessment pathway. There are three assessment pathways, Basic, Intermediate and Detailed.

The assessment pathway is determined by the amount of native vegetation to be removed (in hectares), whether any large trees are to be removed, and the location of the native vegetation in the landscape.

The Native Vegetation Information Management (NVIM)tool assists in preparing an application to remove native vegetation.

The Applicant’s guide – applications to remove, destroy or lop native vegetation helps permit applicants to prepare an application to remove native vegetation.

Applicant’s guide – Applications to remove, destroy or lop native vegetation (PDF, 2.5 MB)

A new search tool has been released to help you search for your offset requirement. The tool is used to search the Native Vegetation Credit Register and a report of credit sites that meet your requirements can be downloaded.

Read the Search the Native Vegetation Credit Register – user guide before using the search tool.

Search the Native Vegetation Credit Register – user guide (PDF, 1.1 MB)

Access search tool

Lodging an application to remove native vegetation

Applications for a permit to remove native vegetation must be lodged with the relevant responsible authority, which is usually the local council. In addition to the application requirements for the native vegetation removal regulations, further information may be required by the local planning scheme.

The Assessor’s handbook – applications to remove, destroy or lop native vegetation (Assessor’s handbook) provides information and guidance to assist local government and DELWP when assessing applications to remove native vegetation.

Assessor’s handbook – Applications to remove, destroy or lop native vegetation (PDF, 5.5 MB)

Some applications to remove, destroy or lop native vegetation are required to be referred to the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP) to provide a recommendation. All other applications are assessed solely by the local council.

If you would like an accessible version of any published document, please contact nativevegetation.support@delwp.vic.gov.au

Page last updated: 11/06/19