Learn more about the draft Bill
- The Urban Forest Bill at a glance
- What is a protected tree?
- Canopy contribution framework
- Tree protection and bonds
The Urban Forest Bill 2022 was passed by the Legislative Assembly on 30 March 2023 and will come into effect on 1 January 2024.
The ACT Government will now focus on working with community and industry in the lead-up to the commencement of the Bill on 1 January 2024, to raise awareness of what is changing under the new legislation and how it affects residents and businesses as well as building a new IT system to implement the reform.
Thanks to everyone who provided a submission on the Draft Urban Forest Bill. The Urban Forest Bill 2022 could not have been possible without your support and participation.
The community and stakeholders were invited to provide submissions on the Draft Urban Forest Bill from 21 April 2022 to 2 June 2022. During the six-week consultation we received 66 submissions in total including 26 submissions from organisations representing diverse sectors and interests.
A What We Heard Report which summarises the key themes from the consultation is now available.
Feedback received during the consultation helped refine the Urban Forest Bill 2022, which was introduced in the Legislative Assembly on Wednesday 3 August 2022.
The Standing Committee on Planning, Transport and City Services then undertook an inquiry into the Bill.
Find out more
Submissions on the draft Urban Forest Bill closed on Thursday 2 June 2022.
Thanks to everyone who provided feedback.
Following an extensive review of the Tree Protection Act 2005 and introduction of the ACT Urban Forest Strategy, the ACT Government is introducing new legislation to further strengthen and improve how we manage trees. The proposed new Urban Forest Bill 2022 will repeal and replace the Tree Protection Act 2005 to improve tree protection on both public and private land and encourage shared care of trees by the ACT Government, industry and the community.
The draft Bill proposes keeping and expanding the main elements of the Tree Protection Act 2005, including protection for large trees on private land (regulated trees), the ACT Tree Register (which recognises exceptional trees) and penalties for those who damage trees without approval. The tree damage application process and criteria for tree removal would be updated to provide greater clarity and streamline the approval process.
Canberrans will be encouraged to consider different sustainable design options when building new structures to safely retain mature trees for current and future generations. The Bill also proposes introducing a tree bond scheme and a canopy contribution framework to ensure that trees are protected, and that when trees are removed, they are replaced.
Community and industry feedback received during the review Tree Protection Act 2005 was used in the development the Draft Urban Forest Bill.
Feedback received during the consultation helped refine the Urban Forest Bill 2022, which was introduced in the Legislative Assembly on Wednesday 3 August 2022.
Some of the changes to the Bill as a result of feedback include:
Feedback from the consultation is also helping inform how we administer the new legislation and assist industry and the wider community to adapt to the changes.
We acknowledge the Ngunnawal people as traditional custodians of the ACT and recognise any other people or families with connection to the lands of the ACT and region. We acknowledge and respect their continuing culture and the contribution they make to the life of this city and this region.
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Chief Minister, Treasury and Economic Development Directorate
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