Clearing of native vegetation on pastoral land

You must have consent to clear native vegetation on pastoral land in the Northern Territory (NT).

Applications for pastoral land clearing (PLC) are determined by the Pastoral Land Board (PLB) in line with the Pastoral Land Act 1992.

Land Development Coordination (LDC) within the Department of Environment and Natural Resources, coordinates the assessment process on behalf of the PLB. They can provide information about how to apply.

Guidelines

The Northern Territory pastoral land clearing guidelines PDF (220.4 KB) will tell you:

  • when you need a permit
  • when don't need a permit (e.g exemptions)
  • the assessment process
  • matters the PLB must consider when determining your application.

You should also read the NT Planning Scheme land clearing guidelines PDF (2.3 MB). Your application must show how the proposed clearing will meet these guidelines.

Timeframes

Assessment of a PLC application will take approximately six months.

If your application is for a non-pastoral use (NPU) and/or an irrigated land use, you will also need to apply for:

  • NPU permit
  • water extraction licence (WEL).

For simple proposals you can lodge the following applications at the same time:

  • PLC
  • NPU
  • WEL.

For complex proposals, you must lodge a WEL first.

For more information, read the timeframes for WEL, PLC, and NPU flowchart PDF (3.3 MB).

How to apply

Incomplete applications will not be accepted.

To apply for a PLC permit, follow these steps:

Step 1. Discuss your proposal with LDC.

Step 2. Prepare a land type map and a land capability/suitability assessment. This will require field survey.

Step 3. Fill in the forms.

Step 4. Prepare other supporting items, including field and spatial data e.g shapefile of the proposed clearing extent.

Step 5. Submit your draft application and supporting documents to LDC.

LDC will do a pre-lodgement review.

Step 6. When you receive confirmation that your application is ready to be formally lodged you must:

  • pay the fee
  • forward confirmation of payment to the LDC.

The steps in the application assessment process are outlined in the pastoral land clearing application assessment process flowchart PDF (200.7 KB).

Permit variation

Incomplete applications will not be accepted.

You may be able to vary an existing PLC permit if:

  • permit has not expired and
  • the part of the permitted clearing area you wish to change has not been cleared.

To apply for a variation, follow these steps:

Step 1. Discuss your proposal with the LDC.

Step 2. Prepare your draft application using the application to vary a pastoral land clearing permit DOCX (519.0 KB).

Step 3. Prepare supporting information, if needed.

Step 4. Submit your draft application and supporting information to LDC for pre-lodgement review.

Step 5. When you receive confirmation that your application is ready to be formally lodged you must:

  • pay the fee
  • forward confirmation of payment to LDC.

Further information

Find out more about soil, land and vegetation mapping, or go to the NR Maps website.

Read about crop types and potential markets on the Department of Primary Industry and Resources website.

Contact

For more information about pastoral land clearing, contact LDC by calling 08 8999 4454 or email pastoralassessment.denr@nt.gov.au.

Last updated: 20 July 2020

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