Crown Lands

Environmental management

We are responsible for management of natural assets on Crown land in NSW. These include areas of high ecological value, cultural and historical heritage, recreational value, and areas with high aesthetic and scenic values.

Environmental management of Crown land includes weed and pest control, revegetation projects, cleaning up illegal dumping, waterway management, managing recreational access, and sediment and erosion control.

We protect and manage our environment across NSW by working with a range of agencies and stakeholders, and support Crown land managers to fulfil their natural asset management requirements through the Public Reserves Management Fund. We have also developed information for approved uses of Crown land in guidelines, fact sheets and FAQs

To help protect the land against illegal activity that threatens its environmental values, we focus on 4 key principles:

  1. education and awareness
  2. monitoring
  3. auditing
  4. compliance investigations

We also take a whole-of-government approach to emergency management including bushfires and floods. 


How we are managing and improving our natural assets

Improving and conserving natural resources including water and foreshores, soil, flora, fauna and scenic quality is our top priority.

We support on the groundwork of natural asset management and work in partnership with a range of agencies, including the Office of Environment and Heritage, to make sure that natural resource management is managed across public land in NSW, and regulations and policies are met.

To make sure you have all the information you need, visit Guidelines, Fact Sheets and FAQs


How we are managing contaminated land

Contamination of Crown land can be an issue across the state. We’ve developed a Contaminated Land Management Strategy and program to address the risks to human health and the environment.

We maintain a register of known and potentially contaminated sites and undertake a risk assessment of the sites. We work with a range of public land managers to ensure consistency and to share knowledge.

We also manage high risk site remediation and coordinate reports to the Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) when required. View the EPA public register for contaminated land.

To report a potential contamination issue, contact us.


How we are controlling weeds and pests

Many weeds and pests can disrupt the native environment. We apply best practice pest management programs that have minimal impact on the environment.

If pesticides are used, we’ll provide notice of use in public places, in one or more of the following ways:

  • placement of signs in the area
  • letters and letterbox drops
  • media
  • directly via telephone or email

Please refer to the Crown land Pesticide Use Notification Plan (PDF, 378 KB) that covers the activities of the Department of Planning and Environment to meet the community's right to know about pesticide applications made to outdoor public places that are controlled or owned by the ministers administering the Crown Land Management Act 2016.

We work with the Department of Primary Industries and Local Land Services to manage weeds and pests on Crown land. We also work with Biosecurity NSW and other stakeholders to implement the NSW Biosecurity Strategy.

Grants for weed and pest control funding are also available under the annual Crown Reserves Improvement Fund.


How we are managing and mitigating bushfires and floods

To protect our community and environment, we manage and mitigate bushfire and flood risks by providing a variety of assets including bush fire trails, asset protection zones, and flood refuges on Crown land. By working with local stakeholders and agencies, we can help reduce the impact of an emergency, saving lives and property.

Bushfires

Our ongoing bushfire mitigation program includes maintaining fire trails and asset protection zones (APZs) and undertaking hazard reduction burns within bush fire districts across the state. All work is governed by the Rural Fires Act 1997.

In the event of an emergency, always call 000 first. For other bushfire mitigation related enquiries on Crown land managed by us, contact us.

For more information, view the Bushfire Management on Crown land factsheet (PDF, 162 KB)

For more information, view the Asset Protection Zones on Crown land fact sheet (PDF, 170 KB)

Floods

Land associated with tidal and non-tidal waterways, including oceans, rivers and lakes is Crown land—this means most river, creek and lake beds, estuaries, and beaches. We work with various government agencies including others within the Department of Planning and Environment, Water and local councils to assist in the mitigation of flood events across NSW. This includes the implementation of levee walls and monitoring systems on Crown land.

During a flood or bushfire event, many of our assets including showgrounds are used for emergency service agencies to undertake operational activities. This could include using Crown reserves as staging and evacuation areas, as well as locations for disaster recovery efforts. To help our Crown land managers (CLMs) during and after emergencies, we may be able to assist with financial disaster recovery support.

 


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