Important new regulations for grazers & growers in the Great Barrier Reef
In February 2019 the Queensland government introduced the Environmental Protection and Other Legislations Amendment Bill 2019 (EPA Bill).
The bill aims to strengthen the protection of the Great Barrier Reef by reducing water pollution, from agriculture and industrial land use, entering the Reef.
Under the EPA Bill, government officers can assess the operations of graziers & grain growers across the Great Barrier Reef catchment and request information about farm activities. The bill also allows the government to ask for data on fertiliser and chemical use, soil testing and crop yields, to ensure farmers are meeting the practice standards.
It is expected that the Queensland government will pass this bill in mid to late 2019 and failure to comply with standards will potentially lead to fines of up to $222,000. Failure to provide information can also lead to fines of $6,672 per failure.
The Reef regions include the Wet Tropics, Burdekin, Mackay, Whitsundays, Cape York, Fitzroy and Burnett Mary and the government has prepared a form to help farmers identify whether they operate in the Reef region.
If you would like to find out whether you will be affected by this bill please follow the link below: https://apps.des.qld.gov.au/map-request/reef-regulation/