Cool fact…
The HIMI wetland regularly supports more than 4 million waterbirds, the majority being macaroni penguins.

Management plan requirements

Brown Lagoon
Brown Lagoon

The Heard Island and McDonald Islands (HIMI) Marine Reserve was declared as a Commonwealth reserve under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (the EPBC Act) and assigned to the IUCN category ‘strict nature reserve’.

The EPBC Act requires Commonwealth reserves to be managed in accordance with the Australian IUCN reserve management principles.

As a World Heritage listed property, management of the HIMI Territory (the islands and the 12 nautical mile territorial sea) must be consistent with Australian World Heritage management principles.

The following section summarises the EPBC Act requirements for Commonwealth reserve management plans.

EPBC Act Requirements for Commonwealth Reserve Management Plans

Under section 367(1) of the EPBC Act, a management plan for a Commonwealth reserve must provide for the protection and conservation of the reserve. In particular, the plan must:

(a) assign the reserve to an IUCN category (whether or not a proclamation has assigned the reserve or a zone of the reserve to that IUCN category);

(b) state how the reserve, or each zone of the reserve, is to be managed;

(c) state how the natural features of the reserve, or of each zone of the reserve, are to be protected and conserved;

(d) if the Director holds land or seabed included in the reserve under lease, be consistent with the Director’s obligations under the lease;

(e) specify any limitation or prohibition on the exercise of a power, or performance of a function, under an Act in or in relation to the reserve:

(f) specify any mining operation, major excavation or other works that maybe carried on in the reserve, and the conditions under which it may be carried on;

(g) specify an operation or activity that may be carried on in the reserve;

(h) indicate generally the activities that are to be prohibited or regulated in the reserve, and the means of prohibiting or regulating them;

(i) indicate how the plan takes account of Australia’s obligations under each international agreement with one or more other countries that is relevant to the reserve;

(j) if the reserve includes a National Heritage place:

(i) not be inconsistent with the National Heritage management principles; and

(ii) address any matters prescribed by the EPBC regulations.

(k) if the reserve includes a Commonwealth Heritage place:

(i) not be inconsistent with the Commonwealth Heritage management principles; and

(ii) address any matters prescribed by the EPBC regulations.

A management plan may divide a Commonwealth reserve into zones and assign each zone to an IUCN category. The category to which a zone is assigned may differ from the category to which the reserve is assigned (section 367(2)).

The provisions of a management plan must not be inconsistent with the Australian IUCN reserve management principles for the IUCN category to which the reserve or a zone of the reserve is assigned (section 367(3)).

In preparing a management plan, section 368 of the requires account to be taken of various matters. In relation to the Reserve these matters include:

  • the regulation of the use of the Reserve for the purpose for which it was declared;
  • the protection of the special features of the Reserve, including objects and sites of biological, historical, palaeontological, archaeological, geological and geographical interest;
  • the protection, conservation and management of biodiversity and heritage within the Reserve;
  • the protection of the Reserve against damage; and
  • Australia’s obligations under agreements between Australia and one or more other countries relevant to the protection and conservation of biodiversity and heritage.

The Heard Island and McDonald Islands Marine Reserve Management Plan addresses the above requirements.

This page was last modified on 28 February 2005.