Re: *Ramsar areas*

Subject: Re: *Ramsar areas*
From: Lawrie Conole <>
Date: Fri, 04 Jul 2003 09:59:03 +1000
Martin.O'm("","Brien");"> wrote:
'Parks Victoria (PV) manages a lot of the land (parks and conservation
reserves) in Ramsar sites and on that land they would be responsible for
enforcement. If it is occurring on land in Ramsar sites not managed by PV
then it would be a wildlife issue - Department of Sustainability &
Environment (previously NRE). However, PV does manage recreational
boating in Western Port. Section 58 of the Wildlife Act says you can't
disturb wildlife wilfully. There is no facility to keep vessels away from
significant wildlife habitat. I've had advice from Coasts Section that
the Marine Act can only deal with issues of human safety.'

Day to day management of Ramsar sites does of course rest with the state authorities, as these areas often overlap conservation reserves of various kinds, etc.  Ultimately though Ramsar sites are matters of Australia's committments under an international treaty, and another layer of protection is codified in the Commonwealth EPBC Act (that I mentioned yesterday in connection with cassowaries and the Wet Tropics).  Whilst national agencies don't involve themselves in site management in Ramsar areas, various impacts may trigger the EPBC Act and therefore invoke federal approval/penalties.  The hovercraft activities in Western Port may or may not be referable - but it's worth investigating the coverage of the EPBC in these matters.

Lawrie Conole
Senior Ecologist
Ornithology & Terrestrial Ecology

Ecology Australia Pty. Ltd.
Flora and Fauna Consultants
88B Station Street
FAIRFIELD VIC 3078 Australia
E-mail: m("","lconole");">
Ph: (03) 9489 4191; Mob: (0419) 588 993
Fax: (03) 9481 7679
ABN 83 006 757 142

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