Biodiversity Conservation Act 2016 No 63
5.16 Proposals by public authorities affecting biodiversity stewardship sites
(1) A public authority must not carry out development on a biodiversity stewardship site unless—(a) it has given written notice of the proposed development to the Minister and the owner of the biodiversity stewardship site, and(b) it has received written notice from the Minister consenting to the development.(2) The Minister may consent to the development only if—(a) the Minister is of the opinion that the development will neither adversely affect any management actions that may be carried out on the land under the biodiversity stewardship agreement nor adversely affect the biodiversity values protected by the agreement, or(b) the Minister is satisfied that any adverse effect of the development on biodiversity values (including any future improvement to biodiversity values that would otherwise be achieved by the management actions on the site) will be offset by the retirement of biodiversity credits by the public authority, or(c) the development is required for an essential public purpose or for a purpose of special significance to the State.(3) The Minister may, as a condition of granting consent under this section, direct the public authority to retire biodiversity credits of a number and class (if any) specified by the Minister.Note.Division 6 of Part 6 enables a person who is required under this section to retire biodiversity credits to make a payment instead to the Biodiversity Conservation Fund of the value of the credits in accordance with the offsets payment calculator.(4) The Minister may approve an arrangement under which—(a) the retirement of some or all of the biodiversity credits is deferred pending the completion of restorative actions that will restore or improve the biodiversity values affected by the development, and(b) the biodiversity credits the retirement of which is deferred pending the completion of those actions are required to be transferred to the Minister.(5) Section 6.28 applies in respect of any such arrangement as if it were a deferred credit retirement arrangement under that section.(6) The Minister may, by notification in the public register of private land conservation agreements under Part 9, vary or terminate the biodiversity stewardship agreement relating to a biodiversity stewardship site without the consent of the owner of the site if consent to development is granted under this section and the variation or termination is necessary to enable the public authority to carry out the development.(7) If a biodiversity stewardship agreement is varied under this section without the approval of the owner of the biodiversity stewardship site, the owner may terminate the agreement by notice in writing to the Minister, but only if—(a) no biodiversity credits have been created in respect of the biodiversity stewardship site, or(b) in a case where biodiversity credits have been created (and whether or not transferred)—none of the credits created have been retired and all the credits are cancelled by the Environment Agency Head with the consent of the holder of the credits.(8) The owner of a biodiversity stewardship site is not entitled to any compensation as a result of the variation or termination of an agreement under this section.(9) Subsection (8) does not affect any right to compensation the owner may have under the Land Acquisition (Just Terms Compensation) Act 1991 or any other Act in respect of the development.(10) The consent of the Minister under this section is not an approval for the purposes of Part 5 of the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979.(11) This section does not apply—(a) to any part of a biodiversity stewardship site that is a wilderness area within the meaning of the Wilderness Act 1987, or(b) in respect of development proposed to be carried out by a public authority on a biodiversity stewardship site if the public authority is the owner of the site and the proposed development is not inconsistent with the terms of the biodiversity stewardship agreement, or(c) in respect of development that comprises emergency or routine work by a public authority of a kind that the authority and the Minister have agreed to exclude from the application of this section.