Flora and Fauna Guarantee Act 1988
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The Flora and Fauna Guarantee Act 1988 is an act of the Victorian government designed to protect species, genetic material and habitats, to prevent extinction and allow maximum genetic diversity within the Australian state of Victoria for perpetuity. It was the first Australian legislation to deal with such issues.
Species may be listed under the act, and so can threatening processes. The Act provides for the declaration of Critical Habitat, however no declarations of critical habitat for endangered species have been made.
Related acts include:
- Conservation, Forests and Lands Act 1987
- Sustainable Forest (Timber) Act 2004
- Forests Act 1958
Also relevant is the Forest Practices Code.
Lawyers for Forests (LFF) published a review of the act in 2002, and found a lack of resources to enforce the act, a lack of government transparency and accountability, that the act may be and is ignored in government decision making, and that the act is generally unenforceable. The review identified the following factors:
- Lack of political will for the implementation of the FFG Act.
- Lack of funding and resources to allow the Department of Natural Resources and Environment ("NRE") to effectively implement the Act.
- Objectives of the FFG Act being overridden by objectives and interests of bodies with conflicting agendas, such as the forestry industry.
As well as a general review, the review considers the impact of the Act on the Leadbeater's possum, the powerful owl and the tiger quoll, as well as on a threatened community and a threatening process. For example, it considers the concern of environmentalists for the small and poorly placed Special Protection and Management Zones for the tiger quoll, the continuing clear-fell logging followed by slash burns in their management zones, and the failure to stop the use of 1080 poison, which is a threat to the species.
Lawyers for Forests recommended that the NRE should receive appropriate funding to fully implement the FFG Act, and the government commit to NRE fulfilling its obligations under the Act. and further recommended that the Act should be enforceable, and NRE should be accountable in its efforts to fulfil its obligations under the Act.
Other environmental groups have echoed the review, for example the "delays or lack of implementation of key documents required under the FFG Act" has also been noted by the Victorian Rainforest Network.
- Flora and Fauna Guarantee Act 1988 - Full text of the act.
- Flora and Fauna Guarantee Act - Listed Taxa, Communities and Potentially Threatening Processes, Department of Sustainability and Environment (DSE)