The NSW Government has remade the IFOAs for the Upper North East, Lower North East, Southern and Eden regions into one Coastal IFOA, which is efficient, effective and enforceable, and reflects modern best-practice regulation. The Coastal IFOA commenced on 16 November 2018.
The explanatory note (PDF 136KB) outlines the purpose and structure of the Coastal IFOA, the areas to which the Coastal IFOA applies and the role of the EPA in enforcing the Coastal IFOA.
Structure of the Coastal IFOA
The Coastal IFOA introduces a new structure and outcomes-based regulatory approach, with a clear hierarchy of outcomes and conditions and protocols. The documents should be used and read in this way.
Coastal IFOA Conditions
The Coastal IFOA conditions (PDF 9.75MB) can only be amended by the Minister for the Environment and the Minister for Lands and Forestry.
The Coastal IFOA conditions set mandatory actions and controls for protecting threatened plants, animals, habitats, soils and water.
Each condition is linked to an outcome statement. Whilst not an enforceable element of the Coastal IFOA, the outcome statements explain the intent of what the conditions are to achieve.
Coastal IFOA Protocols
The Coastal IFOA protocols (PDF 18.4MB) have been adopted by the Coastal IFOA. They set out additional enforceable actions and controls to support the effective implementation of the Coastal IFOA conditions.
The Coastal IFOA protocols can be amended from time to time by the EPA (instead of the Ministers). This ensures that the Coastal IFOA can be adaptively managed to ensure it continues to deliver its intended outcomes and reflect best practice.
Best practice guidance material will also be prepared over the next 12-months to provide further support to the interpretation and implementation of the Coastal IFOA. This guidance material will be published on the EPAs website from time to time.
The Coastal IFOA includes arrangements for the transition of forestry operations from old to new IFOA conditions, to ensure forestry operations underway or already planned are not disrupted. Transitional arrangements can be seen in Protocol 40.
Forestry operations that have been planned or approved under the relevant Upper North East, Lower North East, Southern and Eden IFOAs will continue to operate and be enforced in accordance with the conditions of the relevant IFOA. Alternatively, FCNSW can elect to undertake the forestry operation in accordance with the Coastal IFOA.
Transitional arrangements can continue for a maximum two-year period, or conclude earlier if they are no longer required.