Often, bushfire-prone areas have a significant level of biodiversity, and WA BAL Report recognizes the importance of considering bushfire risk management measures alongside the need to protect the environment and biodiversity. Bushfire-prone areas that are also wetlands, foreshores, Bush Forever sites, remnant vegetation, threatened species and ecological communities, nature reserves and coastal reserves may be particularly relevant to conservation efforts.
Planning proposals have to meet bushfire protection requirements while not impacting on the bushfire and environmental management of neighbouring reserves, properties or conservation covenants. WA BAL Report considers that planning assessments need to also consider existing planning policies and publications, whether the site has been identified as a vegetation corridor, environmentally-sensitive site or otherwise identified in a planning document as being reserved for a conservation or environmental protection purpose, any landscape issues and the requirements of the relevant environmental legislation. These considerations are most effectively assessed at the planning stage.
Developments in bushfire-prone areas can adversely affect the retention of native vegetation through clearing associated with the creation of Hazard Separation Zones (HSZ) and Asset Protection Zones (APZ) (formerly called Building Protection Zones). Where the loss of vegetation in these areas is not acceptable, it may be necessary to reduce lot yield, cluster development, comply with the applicable bushfire construction requirements of the Building Code of Australia or relevant to the BAL of the site, or modify the development location in order to minimize the removal or modification of remnant vegetation.
The application might be refused where the value of the vegetation is high and the landowner/proponent proposes achieving an acceptable bushfire risk through vegetation clearing without consideration of other management measures. Where biodiversity management conflicts with bushfire risk management measures and significant native vegetation clearing is the only means of managing bushfire risk the proposal would generally not be supported.
For more information
WA BAL Report are experts at conducting Bushfire Attack Level Assessments, Bushfire Attack Level Reports and bushfire prevention strategies in general in Perth and Western Australia. For more information, contact our friendly staff on 08 6114 9356 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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