Protecting and conserving biodiversity in an active farming region

In May 2015, Council adopted a 20-year Biodiversity Management Strategy (BMS) to protect and enhance the truly unique and rich biodiversity in our Local Government Area (LGA).

Learn more about our BMS with the Lismore Biodiversity Management Strategy video.

In late 2019, Council commenced the first of its four-yearly reviews of the BMS. The purpose of these regular, operational reviews is to ensure that Council is on track to deliver the expected outcomes of the BMS, and that the best available knowledge and techniques are employed in its delivery. A number of positive gains have already been achieved in the first four years, enabled by the commencement of a special rate variation (SRV) in 2016 to fund the implementation of projects and with significant commitment from Council, its community and industries. However, there is still much work to be done and we are in it for the long run!

While much of the revised BMS remains essentially the same as the original BMS, some key revisions include a redefined framework that aims to more clearly convey the links between the overall goals of the BMS with longer-term strategies and objectives, and then 75 actions that focus on the next 5-year period to achieve these.

The goals of the BMS are to:

  • Develop a greater understanding of the flora and fauna, habitats and ecological processes of the area and their value
  • Identify and mitigate the pressures on these biodiversity values
  • Improve the broader community’s awareness of biodiversity through education and engagement activities
  • Foster partnerships with and build capacity for rural landholders, industry and community groups to improve biodiversity stewardship on private lands
  • Foster partnerships with and build capacity for community groups to protect and improve biodiversity on Council-managed, public lands
  • Promote a landscape connectivity approach as the basis for managing biodiversity and building landscape resilience to climate change
  • Embed the principles of ecologically sustainable development into planning processes
  • Provide a long-term strategic framework to guide on-the-ground actions that lead to measurable biodiversity outcomes
  • Foster an adaptive management approach so that the strategy can continuously improve on its delivery

The figure below shows a visual overview of the BMS framework, outlining strategies for biodiversity protection and enhancement across three program areas – Internal, Rural and Urban.

Two major initiatives that have come out of the BMS are:

The Rural Landholder Initiative recognises rural landholders as the primary stewards of biodiversity in our area and facilitates partnerships with them, industry and Aboriginal and community groups to manage biodiversity in the long-term.

The Urban Green Corridors Plan provides a strategic and coordinated approach to the conservation and restoration of biodiversity in bushland reserves throughout urban Lismore, including along our rivers.

There many other projects and initiatives for Council to fulfil its obligations and responsibilities, support our community and reduce the significant pressures on biodiversity. For more information visit the BMS documents below:

Biodiversity Management Strategy 2015-2035: Revised 2nd Edition
Technical Report 1: Vegetation Mapping for the Lismore LGA (Grey and Blue Zones) 2011
Technical Report 2: Key Habitats and Corridors Report 2012
Technical Report 3: Vegetation mapping for the Lismore LGA Green (Northern) Zone (2019)

A copy of the Biodiversity Management Strategy 2015-2035: Year 4 Operational Review Report that outlines the approach and revisions undertaken in the BMS review can also be made available on request.