Policies and agreements

This page provides links to policies, agreements and frameworks that guide the management of natural resources in Australia.


Formal Agreements with States and Territories

The Australian, state and territory governments have a mutual interest and long history of working together to protect the environment and better manage our natural resources. Their working relationship under Caring for our Country is based on the principles of mutual benefit, administrative simplicity and efficiency; and maintenance of effort.

Caring for our Country is currently delivered through interim bilateral agreements between the Commonwealth and each of the States and Territories. In the future a multi-lateral National Partnership Agreement will be developed for some of the funding components of the program. The Commonwealth will directly contract with proponents for the remaining components.

Bilateral agreements with the states and territories were established under the former programs, the Natural Heritage Trust and Nation Action Plan for Salinity and Water Quality.


The Caring for our Country MERI Strategy

The Australian Government is taking a strategic approach to measuring the achievements of Caring for our Country investment through this strategy.

Australian Pest Animal Strategy

The Australian Pest Animal Strategy addresses the impacts of introduced mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians and fish that have become pests in Australia.

Australian Weeds Strategy

The Australian Weeds Strategy identifies priorities for weed management across the nation. It aims to minimise the impact of weeds on Australia's environmental, economic and social assets.

Australia's Biodiversity Conservation Strategy 2010-2030

This Strategy is a significant national policy document that will guide how governments, the community, industry and scientists manage and protect Australia's plants, animals and ecosystems over the next twenty years.


Australia's Sustainable Forest Management Framework of Criteria and Indicators 2008

The essential aim of sustainable forest management is to maintain the broad range of forest values in perpetuity, but assessing progress towards this aim is difficult. Criteria and indicators are used to simplify the task by characterising the essential components of sustainable forest management.

A National Framework for Public Environmental Reporting

This framework was developed to encourage voluntary public environmental reporting in Australia by providing simple and effective guidance at a national level.

Council of Australian Governments (CoAG) Water Reform Framework

In February 1994, the Council of Australian Governments (CoAG), comprising the Prime Minister, Premiers, Chief Ministers and the President of the Australian Local Government Association, agreed to implement a ‘strategic framework to achieve an efficient and sustainable water industry’.

The framework is based on the recognition that action is required to halt the widespread degradation of our natural resources and minimise the unsustainable use of our precious water resources. It seeks to establish integrated and consistent approaches to Australian water resource management.

Australia's Native Vegetation Framework

Australia’s Native Vegetation Framework guides native vegetation management across the Australian landscape. The framework recognises that native vegetation is crucial for the health of Australia’s environment, that it supports our economy and productivity as well as our biodiversity and that it is embedded within Australia’s cultural identity.