The department is exploring different ways satellite imagery could be accessed by and distributed to land managers. The department is looking at how the information derived from the imagery might fit into a regulatory framework over pastoral leases. Implementation of a new monitoring system may require changes to the Land Administration Act 1997.
Voluntary rangelands monitoring
Where a rangelands condition issue has been identified on a lease, the PLB may direct the lessee to demonstrate improvement within a given timeframe. In order to demonstrate improvement, the lessee must provide evidence.
The Rangelands Condition Monitoring (RCM) methodology is an option for lessees to demonstrate improvement to the satisfaction of the Board.
The methods for installing sites in the shrublands and the grasslands:
To assist with monitoring pastoral leases, assessment sheets are available for use, specific to grassland and shrubland sites:
The Department of Primary Industry and Regional Development website provides further information in relation to monitoring rangelands conditions.
Where a pastoral lease is adversely affected by a disaster or a lessee is suffering personal financial hardship as a result of poor economic conditions in the pastoral industry, the PLB under section 128 of the Land Administration Act 1997 may recommend to the Minister that the lessee be granted an appropriate level of rent relief.
A natural disaster may have significant impacts for a pastoral lease in terms of damage to infrastructure, loss of stock, and interruptions to pastoral operations. Whilst the risk of a natural disaster should be factored into a lease’s business plan, the PLB recognises that such events can be more debilitating than anticipated.
The PLB also recognises that poor economic conditions in the pastoral industry may have a direct impact on a pastoralist’s financial position.
If the degree of the negative impact of either of these two types of occurrence is severe enough to result in ongoing hardship, the PLB may see a case to recommend to the Minister that the payment of rent be deferred or waived or the level of rent outstanding be reduced, in order to provide a degree of financial relief for the affected lessee.
Pastoral land condition reports