Legal responsibilities for managing invasive species

Noxious weeds and pest animals affect the entire Victorian community and can cause a range of serious problems by impacting on:

  • human and animal health
  • biodiversity
  • waterways
  • agriculture.

Everyone has a role to play in the management of noxious weeds and pest animals. This is essential to improving Victoria's:

  • productivity
  • competitiveness
  • sustainability
  • natural environment.

Responsibilities of land owners and occupiers

All land owners and land occupiers (public and private) are responsible for managing noxious weeds and established pest animals on their land under the CaLP Act and any local laws.

Under section 20 of the CaLP Act, all land owners, including the Crown, public authorities and licensees of Crown lands, must, about their land, take all reasonable steps to:

  • avoid causing or contributing to land degradation, which causes or may cause damage to land of another land owner
  • eradicate regionally prohibited weeds
  • prevent the growth and spread of regionally controlled weeds on their land
  • prevent the spread of, and as far as possible, eradicate established pest animals

The CaLP Act also requires you to get a permit to buy, move, sell, display or transport any of these species into or within Victoria.

For more information, see:

Responsibilities of the government

  • The Australian Government's role in managing invasive plants and animals is mainly about national pre-border and border biosecurity, with a coordination and leadership role for achieving national biosecurity outcomes.
  • The state and territory governments are primarily responsible for managing the risks of invasive species that are already present in their respective jurisdictions.
  • Local governments have responsibilities to manage noxious weeds and established pest animals and protect land and water resources on land that they manage.

Victorian Government

The Victorian Government is responsible for:

  • administrating Victoria's main legislation for invasive plants and animals, the Catchment and Land Protection Act 1994 (CaLP Act)
  • setting statewide strategic policy for invasive species
  • enforcing the provisions of the CaLP Act.

The Victorian Government is also responsible for the management of invasive species as a land manager under the CaLP Act and other relevant laws. This involves taking all reasonable steps to:

The Victorian Government's roles and responsibilities for managing invasive species are mainly delivered by the Agriculture Victoria, with the management of parks and reserves directed through Parks Victoria.

The state government is supported in the implementation of the CaLP Act by the following:

  • Victorian Catchment Management Council (VCMC), which has a statutory function of an advisory nature
  • Catchment Management Authorities which has statutory functions to coordinate and implement invasive species activities at a regional level and advise the Minister for Environment and Climate Change on any matter referred to it by that Minister, including advice on any proposal to declare or revoke a noxious weed.
Page last updated: 22 Jul 2020