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ECC Box-Ironbark Forests & Woodlands Investigation (1996-2001)


  • Draft
  • In progress
  • Completed


In April 1996 the Government required the LCC to carry out a special investigation of box-ironbark forests and woodlands in northern Victoria.  That investigation began, and much information was collected, with assistance from the then Department of Natural Resources and Environment and Commonwealth agencies.  A draft report was prepared describing the resources, values and uses in the area.  

In June 1997 the Land Conservation Act 1970 was repealed and replaced by the Environment Conservation Council Act 1997.  Under this Act the LCC ceased to exist and the ECC was established to respond to specific references from the relevant Minister. 

In December 1997 the ECC received a request from the Minister for an Investigation of Victoria's Box-Ironbark Forests and Woodland Areas, building on work begun by the LCC. 

The Box-Ironbark investigation area completely encompassed the LCC’s North Central study area, and all but about 40,300 hectares (or 2.4%) of the Murray Valley study area.  Together these two areas covered approximately 59% of the Box-Ironbark investigation area.  Portions of six other LCC study areas made up the remaining area. 

A resources and issues report was published in December 1997. More than 2,000 submissions and letters were received on the report. A draft report was published in May 2000. About 1,500 written submissions and letters were received commenting on the draft report. A final report was submitted to government in June 2001.

Victoria’s Box-Ironbark forests and woodlands are a major component of the once vast belt of temperate woodlands that covered much of south-eastern Australia between the arid interior and the mountain forests of the Great Dividing Range. Since European settlement, 83% of the original Box-Ironbark vegetation has been cleared for agriculture, gold mining, urban development and wood products. Most of what remains is on public land. The remaining forests are highly fragmented and contain many threatened plant and animal species.

The resources and issues report, draft report and final report are available from this page.

Government decisions on the final recommendations can be found on this website here.

A small part of the area was included in the Central West Investigation (2017-2019).

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