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Clearing before and after a natural disaster

This page explains the notification and approval requirements to clear vegetation to prepare, deal with and recover from natural disasters.

Preparing your property for a natural disaster

Firebreaks and fire management lines

Special provisions apply to clearing for fire management.

Other clearing under a code or development approval

You may be able to undertake other clearing to mitigate the impact of natural disasters using an accepted development vegetation clearing code.

These codes are self-assessable.  You must notify us before starting to clear, and make sure you follow the requirements listed in the code. The codes in Table 1 have relevant provisions.

For any clearing beyond this scope, you’ll need to apply for a development approval.

Table 1: Clearing for natural disasters using a clearing code

Code

Vegetation types

Natural disaster provisions

Necessary environmental clearing

Category B, C and R vegetation across Queensland

Flood preparation: removal of vegetation from a watercourse to mitigate flooding

Clearing for infrastructure

Category B, C and R vegetation across Queensland

Clearing for firebreaks in non-coastal areas

Clearing for infrastructure

Category C and R vegetation across QueenslandClearing for fire management lines

Managing regulated regrowth vegetation

Category C and R vegetation, across Queensland on freehold, leasehold land granted for agriculture or grazing purposes, Indigenous land or occupational licence

Clearing for public safety risk

Cleaning-up after a disaster

Clearing debris

You can remove fallen woody debris without a permit or notification from existing tracks, roads, fire management lines and firebreaks.

Clearing in disaster-declared areas

If the government has declared your district a disaster area, you don’t need to get our approval or to notify us if the clearing is necessary to prevent or minimise any of the following:

  • loss of human life, or illness or injury
  • property loss or damage
  • damage to the environment.

This applies for 1 year following the disaster declaration. Table 2 shows current disaster declared areas in Queensland.

Table 2: Clearing exemption dates in disaster declared areas

Disaster event

Local government area

Date declared

Exemption valid to

Southern Queensland bushfires

  • Scenic Rim

7 September 2019

7 September 2020

Eastern Queensland bushfires

  • Noosa

8 November 2019

8 November 2020

Eastern Queensland bushfires

  • Livingstone

9 November 2019

9 November 2020

Eastern Queensland bushfires

  • Bundaberg

13 November 2019

13 November 2020

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