The Territory Labor Government has released its draft Northern Territory Offsets Policy for public comment.
The purpose of the policy is to ensure economic development continues while our environmental values are protected in the long term.
The Government is delivering an environmental offset policy as part of its response to the recommendations of the Scientific Inquiry into Hydraulic Fracturing in the Northern Territory.
It will guide the development of offsets arrangements, as well as biodiversity offsets where projects are determined to have a significant residual impact. It will also ensure consistency and give certainty to the community and businesses looking to invest in the Territory.
All other Australian jurisdictions and the Australian Government already have an environmental offset policy, and the draft Policy will align the Territory with best practice environmental management.
The Northern Territory is proposing to implement a targetbased offsets model which fits our unique circumstances.
Development of this model will be tailored through public consultation and expert advice from academics and practitioners.
The model could include the reduction of landscape-scale threats such as fire, weeds and feral animals.
Offsets in the Northern Territory could provide new opportunities for Aboriginal Territorians through jobs on country whilst ensuring ongoing economic investment.
The community is invited to provide feedback of the draft Policy by visiting https://haveyoursay.nt.gov.au/
Quotes attributed to the Minister for Environment and Natural Resources Eva Lawler:
“The Territory Labor Government understands a strong economy relies on a healthy environment. This is why we are developing a climate change plan, it’s why we are creating jobs through our 50% renewables target, it’s why we are strengthening environmental protection laws, and why we are developing an offsets policy.
“Our Territory has a unique set of environmental characteristics which needs a specific Territory approach.
“The Territory Labor Government will work with community members and leaders in this field to create the best offsets policy suited for the Territory.”