The Biosecurity Act 2014 is designed to deliver a single, cohesive legislative framework that replaces 6 Acts, makes substantive amendments to 3 other Acts, and replaces 11 pieces of subordinate legislation. The new Act will improve Queensland’s biosecurity preparedness and response capabilities.
All Queenslanders need to take an active role in managing biosecurity risks under their control, this obligation means we must take all reasonable steps to ensure the spread of a pest, disease or contaminant does not happen.
Under the Act everyone is required to report unusual events that may be related to biosecurity.
How can you reduce risks?
In most cases, you can reduce risks by following simple steps:
- Closely inspect pot plants and potting mix before taking them home. They pose a biosecurity risk if they are carrying pest plants, diseases and/or ants that are not already in your region.
- Check for animal diseases that could be spread through contact with other animals and for weed seeds before allowing them onto your property or moving them to another area. Animals pose a biosecurity risk if they are carrying pests or diseases that could impact agricultural industries.
- Manage pests (e.g. weeds and feral animals) and diseases that could have negative impacts on neighbouring properties.
You are not expected to know all the biosecurity risks; however you are expected to know about the risks associated with your day to day work and your hobbies. Your general biosecurity obligation is to take all reasonable steps to prevent or minimise each biosecurity risk.
What do you need to do?
Under the Biosecurity Act, for a person to fulfil their general biosecurity obligation (GBO) they must take all reasonable and practical measures to prevent or minimise the biosecurity risk regarding biosecurity matter that they are dealing with to ensure that the risk associated with the biosecurity matter is minimised.
The major function of local government under the Biosecurity Act is to ensure invasive biosecurity matter found within the local government’s area of operation is managed in compliance with the Act.
To perform regulatory functions, Authorised Persons will be appointed by local government to investigate, monitor and enforce compliance with the Act.
For more information on all the above please visit https://www.daf.qld.gov.au/business-priorities/biosecurity/policy-legislation-regulation/biosecurity-act-2014/general-biosecurity-obligation
Biosecurity Matter, Restricted and Prohibited Species Reporting
Prohibited matter is biosecurity matter that is not found in Queensland but would have a significant adverse impact on our health, way of life, the economy or the environment if it entered the state.
You will be expected to know about prohibited matter that you may come across in your environment, or as part of your business or hobby.
If you become aware of prohibited matter or you believe, or ought reasonably believe that something is prohibited matter, you need to:
- report it to Biosecurity Queensland on 13 25 23 within 24 hours, unless you are aware that it has already been reported
- take all reasonable steps to minimise the risks of the prohibited matter and not make the situation worse.
If you are unsure if it is prohibited matter, contact Biosecurity Queensland for more information https://www.daf.qld.gov.au/business-priorities/biosecurity/policy-legislation-regulation/biosecurity-act-2014/biosecurity-matter-report/prohibited-matter
Restricted matter is biosecurity matter found in Queensland and has a significant impact on human health, social amenity, the economy or the environment.
You are not expected to know about all types of restricted matter, however you are expected to know about the restricted matter that you could potentially come across as part of your business or hobby.
Specific actions are required to limit the spread and impact of this matter by reducing, controlling or containing it.
There are 7 categories of restricted matter. Category 1 and 2 restricted matter must be reported.
If you would like more information on biosecurity in Queensland please visit https://www.daf.qld.gov.au/business-priorities/biosecurity.