Final north east nsw rfa

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3.3 Unrestricted Data

      1. Subject to this clause 3.3.2, Unrestricted Data is available to the public without restriction in respect to the purposes for its use.

      2. Unrestricted Data and products may be used by third parties for unrestricted use provided that the copyright interests of the Owner are protected. Any party making available Unrestricted Data must require third parties to include on any reproduction of Unrestricted Data the following statement:

Copyright © [insert name of copyright owner] [insert year of creation].

3.4 Data Management Arrangements

3.4.1 The Parties agree to the custodianship, management, maintenance, access and use according to whether data is classified as ‘Restricted’, ‘Licensed’ or ‘Unrestricted’ as detailed above and in the Schedules. The classification of each Data set will be agreed on a case by case basis for all Data used for development of the RFA and as outlined in the Schedules to be added to this Data Agreement.

3.4.2 The Parties will agree on the Data Custodian to manage, maintain and release the Data as outlined in the Schedules to this Data Agreement. The Data Custodian will maintain a register of all Data transfers for Data classified as Restricted or Licensed that will be available to either Party.

3.4.3 Over time, Data may be reclassified from one access category to another, subject to the approval of the Data Owner, agreement by the Parties and the notification of the Custodian of this reclassification.

4. Data Archive

  1. The intention and purpose of the Data Archive is to ensure that baseline Data is available for undertaking RFA reviews.

  2. Access to Archived Data shall be consistent with this Data Agreement.

  3. The Parties will ensure that, subject to clause 4.5, all Singly Owned Data, Jointly Owned Data and Third Party Owned Data including Assessment Reports, Source Data and Derived Data identified in the Schedules to the Data Agreement will be included in the Data Archive unless confidentiality provisions prevent this.

  4. The Data Archive shall include copies of all Data, models and software in the Schedules, Metadata, and documentation of models or modelling tools, required for the purposes of meeting Regional Forest Agreement obligations and undertaking assessments for RFA Purposes.

  5. Copies of the full Data Archive shall be held at one State location and two Commonwealth locations. Where this is prevented due to commercial, confidentiality, copyright or previous contractual arrangements that Data must nevertheless be archived by the Custodian in a manner satisfactory to both Parties. Remote archiving of Data should be avoided wherever possible.

  6. The Custodian identified in the Schedules to this Data Agreement shall provide copies of the Data, Metadata and other documentation for the Data Archive by the following dates:

  1. Eden Region (Schedule 1) by 30 April 2000;

  2. Upper North East Region (Schedule 2) by 30 June 2000;

  3. Lower North East Region (Schedule 3) by 30 June 2000, and

  4. Southern Region (Schedule 4) - on a date to be agreed by the Parties on signing of the Agreement.

  1. The manager of the NSW copy of the RFA Data Archive will be the Department of Urban Affairs and Planning. The managers of the Commonwealth copies of the RFA Data Archive will be Environment Australia - Department of Environment and Heritage, and Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forests (Bureau of Rural Sciences).

  2. Maintenance of the Data Archive will be the responsibility of an appropriate nominee at each of the three Data Archive sites. All archiving of Data and other information must provide appropriate security and must ensure the continuing recoverability of Archived Data (preferably by CD ROM) and must include Metadata and/or other relevant supporting documentation to enable use of that Data and other information.

  3. The Parties shall have access to all Archived Data in the Data Archive as baseline Data for RFA review purposes.

  4. The Archived Data Archive must not be changed, amended or altered unless this is necessary to correct an error occurring during the archiving process, in which case all Data Archive Managers and Parties must be notified and the error must be rectified by the Custodian.

5. Metadata

5.1 All Singly Owned Data and Jointly Owned Data identified in the Schedule shall be described by standard Metadata. Standard Metadata will be freely exchanged between Parties and third parties.

5.2 The Australia New Zealand Land Information Council (ANZLIC) metadata standards as supplemented for the NSW CRA/RFA process (see CRA Data Manual - A report undertaken for the NSW CRA/RFA Steering Committee, May 1998) will be used to describe all Source Data, Existing Data and Derived Data. Metadata for a given Data set is the responsibility of the Custodian for that Data set.

5.3 The ANZLIC (1996) metadata standard has been adopted as the metadata standard for the NSW CRA/RFA. (Reference: ANZLIC Guidelines: Core Metadata Elements: Version 1 - Metadata for high level land and geographic data directories in Australia and New Zealand. ANZLIC 1996.).

5.4 The Parties will ensure that the custodian for each Data set will provide the Metadata statements to the Australia Spatial Data Directory (ASDD) consistent with jurisdictional practices.

6. Data updates

    1. The Parties agree to provide appropriate mutual access to updated and modified Assessment Data that is not subject to confidentiality obligations and restrictions on use for the purposes of RFA review and monitoring. Any significant upgrades to, or modification of, the Assessment Data must be reported to the other Party on request.

6.2 If significantly upgraded versions of Jointly Owned Data are developed in the course of the normal business of either Party, they will be Singly Owned Data and provided to the other Party as required for RFA Purposes in accordance with this Data Agreement.

6.3 If upgraded versions are developed for RFA Purposes and the upgrade was jointly funded, the new versions of Data will be Jointly Owned Data unless otherwise agreed and will be provided to the other Party at no cost.

6.4 CRA Data yet to be completed and listed as ‘work in progress’ in the Schedules to this agreement will, on completion, be provided to the other Party consistent with the Ownership Type and Access Categories subsequently agreed between the Parties and identified in the Schedule.

6.5 The Parties recognise that access to New Data may be required for the purposes of RFA reviews. Immediately prior to any RFA review the Parties shall determine which New Data is appropriate for review purposes, and negotiate access to that New Data through the Custodian.

6.6 The Custodian of any 'work in progress' (as identified on the Schedules) shall notify both Parties upon the completion of those Data sets. Thereafter, access to that Data shall be through the Custodian, in accordance with the appropriate sections of this Data Agreement.

7. Participant Stakeholder Access to Assessment Data Post-RFA Signing

On request, a copy of Licensed and Unrestricted Assessment Data, as archived, will be issued to participant stakeholders subject to the provisions of a Licence issued by the Department of Urban Affairs and Planning.

  1. Data Access by Third Parties.

Data access by non-RFA participants will be addressed on a case-by-case basis consistent with the appropriate sections of this Data Agreement and shall be granted through the relevant Custodian.

9. Contacts

Correspondence concerning this Data Agreement should be marked to the attention of the GIS Manager for Regional Forest Agreements in the relevant agency as set out below.

Resources and Conservation Division

Department of Urban Affairs and Planning

GPO Box 3927

Sydney NSW 2001

Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry - Bureau of Rural Sciences

PO Box E11


Environment Australia, Department of Environment and Heritage

GPO Box 787


(clause 46)


Principle 1: Maintain or increase the full suite of forest values for present and future generations across the NSW native forest estate

  • The principle of intergenerational equity (that in meeting the needs of the present generation, the ability of the future generations to meet their own needs is not compromised) is embodied in this principle.

  • Ensure that ESFM at the regional and smaller scales is implemented by ecologically appropriate planning and operational practices, and that ESFM targets are set and indicators of performance are monitored.

  • Ensure the long-term maintenance of the full range of values of the NSW existing forest estate. The intention is to maintain or increase not only the full range of values, but also the magnitude or level at which those values are maintained or increased.

  • Encourage the increased production of plantation-grown timber and the social and economic benefits flowing from this increased production to supplement the wood supply from native forests.

Aims for values include

A Biodiversity

  • Biological diversity of forests at the ecosystem, species and genetic levels where biological diversity includes natural patterns of ecosystems, species and gene pools in time and space.

  • Address the requirements of vulnerable species, assist with the recovery of threatened species, and maintain the full range of ecological communities at viable levels.

  • Protect landscape values through the careful planning of operations and the reservation of appropriate patches and corridors of vegetation.

B The productive capacity and sustainability of forest ecosystems

  • Maintain ecological processes within forests (such as the formation of soil, energy flows and the carbon, nutrient and water cycles, fauna and flora communities and their interactions).

  • Maintain or increase the ability of forest ecosystems to produce biomass whether utilised by society or as part of nutrient and energy cycles.

  • Ensure the rate of removal of any forest products is consistent with ecologically sustainable levels.

  • Ensure the deleterious effects of activities/disturbances which threaten forests, forest health or forest values are minimised.

C Forest ecosystem health and vitality

  • Reduce or avoid threats to forest ecosystems from introduced diseases, exotic plants and animals, unnatural regimes of fire or flooding, wind shear, land clearing and urbanisation.

  • Promote good environmental practice in relation to pest management.

  • Ensure the deleterious effects of activities/disturbances within forests, their scale and intensity, including their cumulative effects are minimised.

  • Restore and maintain the suite of attributes (ecological condition, species composition and structure of native forests) where forest health and vitality have been degraded.

D Soil and water

  • Maintain the chemical and biological functions of soils by protecting soils from unnatural nutrient losses, exposure, degradation and loss.

  • Maintain the physical integrity of soils by protecting soils from erosion, mass movement, instability, compaction, pulverisation and loss.

  • Protect water quality (physical, chemical, biological) by measures controlling disturbance resulting from forest activities.

  • Identify and maintain at appropriate levels, water yield and flow duration in catchments.

E Positive contribution of forests to global geochemical cycles

  • Maintain the positive contribution of forests to the global geochemical cycle (includes climate, air and water quality and deposition).

F Long-term social and economic benefits

  • Maintain and enhance, on an ecologically sustainable basis, production of wood and wood products, including value adding, investment and resource security.

  • Provided it is ecologically sustainable, set, maintain or enhance the level of use of non-wood products and uses, including bee-keeping, grazing, mining, recreation and tourism, reliable water supply.

  • Maintain and enhance, on an ecologically sustainable basis, the provision of employment and community needs such as economic diversification, investment skills, education, jobs stability, training and Indigenous needs.

  • Encourage the establishment and use of plantation forests on existing cleared land to expand social and economic values.

  • Maintain and enhance the intangible social welfare benefits which forests provide.

G Natural and cultural heritage values

  • Protect social, natural and cultural heritage values and sites, including aesthetic, landscape, historic, cultural, educational, scenic, spiritual and scientific values, including Indigenous values and sites.

Principle 2 Ensure public participation, access to information, accountability and transparency in the delivery of ESFM.

  • Ensure public participation in decision-making processes at local, regional and State and Federal levels.

  • Ensure comprehensive, timely and reasonable public access to information.

  • Ensure transparency, openness and accountability in decision making processes and performance.

Principle 3 Ensure legislation, policies, institutional framework, codes, standards and practices related to forest management require and provide incentives for ecologically sustainable management of the native forest estate.

Establish a process for shared management and administration, recognising the customary and traditional rights of Indigenous people, and the interests of private land-holders and other stakeholders in an area’s management.

Principle 4 Apply precautionary principles for prevention of environmental degradation

The incorporation of the precautionary principle into decision making has been endorsed by State and Commonwealth Governments (Commonwealth of Australia 1992 p. 49, IGAE 1992) and is defined as ‘where there are threats of serious or irreversible environmental damage, lack of full scientific certainty should not be used as a reason for postponing measures to prevent environmental degradation. In the application of the precautionary principle, public and private decisions should be guided by:

  • careful evaluation to avoid, wherever practicable, serious or irreversible damage to the environment; and

  • an assessment of the risk-weighted consequences of various options.’

Principle 5 Apply best available knowledge and adaptive management processes

ESFM would utilise the concept of adaptive management and continuous improvement based on best science and expert advice and targeted research on critical gaps in knowledge, monitoring or evaluation.

1 Reference to this report in this Agreement does not imply or convey any agreement with or agreement to any commentary or recommendation but is restricted to description of the forest management system described within that report.

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