The decision guidelines below will be applied by the responsible authority to the three risk-based assessment pathways.
An application for removal cannot be refused on biodiversity grounds (unless it is not in accordance with any property vegetation plan that applies to the site).
The strategic biodiversity score and habitat importance score of the native vegetation proposed to be removed are considered. Where relevant, the responsible authority will consider whether the proposed development is in accordance with a property vegetation plan.
The responsible authority will consider whether reasonable steps have been taken to ensure that impacts of the proposed removal of native vegetation on Victoria’s biodiversity have been minimised with regard to the contribution to biodiversity made by the native vegetation to be removed and by the native vegetation to be retained.
Reasonable steps are considered to have been taken when one of the following applies:
The responsible authority will also consider whether an offset has been identified that meets requirements.
In addition to the moderate risk pathway requirements, the responsible authority will consider whether the native vegetation to be removed makes a significant contribution to Victoria’s biodiversity. This includes considering: