Removal / Lopping

Contact the council before cutting, damaging or removing any trees on your land, as you may require a planning permit to remove individual trees, even if they are:

  • close to a house
  • causing a fire risk
  • causing a problem with drains
  • diseased.

In some instances, land titles have a tree protection order attached, requiring written approval from council before trees can be removed. Contact council's Planning Department on 6382 8814 to check whether a permit is required and what provisions apply. Please give a good description of the tree's location and the problem. If you are removing a tree or trees as part of a development application you need to indicate the locations of the tree or trees on your plans. Council officers will decide whether the trees should be removed or not in their overall assessment of the development.

Clearing large numbers of trees

In general terms:

  • if you are harvesting or clearing more than 1 hectare of trees or 100 tonnes of timber, from land which is not vulnerable, for any purpose; or
  • if more than 6 tree ferns are being harvested:

you are required under the Forest Practices Act 1985 to obtain a Forest Practices Plan. These are assessed and issued by the Forest Practices Board and are completely separate from any council approval. Further information about the Forest Practices Board and Forest Practices Plans can be found on the Forest Practices Board website.

If you are clearing 'vulnerable' land you must always first obtain a Forest Practices Plan, regardless of the size of the area. Vulnerable land is defined in the Forest Practices Regulations 1997 as land:

  • more than 800 metres above sea level
  • within 40 metres of a watercourse
  • having a slope of more than 26 degrees
  • within 2 km upstream of a water supply intake
  • that is habitat for threatened species, as defined under the Threatened Species Protection Act 1995.

When you submit a request to remove a tree it will be assessed by council's Planning Department as to whether you need a permit. If it is determined that a permit is required, you will be asked to provide further information and submit a development application.

If a planning permit is required to remove a tree, a charge for processing the application will be payable