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Natural Heritage Trust of Australia Act 1997

Section 43 of the Natural Heritage Trust of Australia Act 1997 requires the minister to prepare an annual report on the operation of the Natural Heritage Trust of Australia Account, including a set of financial statements.

The Trust Account financial statements are audited by the Auditor-General and the audit report and statements are included in the Natural Heritage Trust financial statements.


National Landcare Program

The Natural Heritage Trust is the principal funding stream supporting the Australian Government's National Landcare Program.

The National Landcare Program is a key part of the government’s commitment to protect and conserve Australia’s water, soil, plants, animals and ecosystems, and to support the productive and sustainable use of these valuable resources.

The Australian Government is investing around $1 billion in the second phase of the National Landcare Program, which is being delivered from July 2017 to June 2023. This second phase of investment continues the government’s commitment to natural resource management, sustainable land management and environmental protection. The investment helps Landcare, Indigenous and community groups continue their valuable work of delivering on-ground biodiversity and sustainable agriculture outcomes that benefit our communities and the environment.

Under the $450 million Regional Land Partnerships program, the government has adopted a procurement process to deliver natural resource management investment across 54 management units. This program is delivering 223 projects across Australia and contributes to recovering species identified under the Threatened Species Strategy, protecting threatened ecological communities, and reducing threats to our globally-important wetlands and world heritage sites.

Projects are also contributing towards sustainable agricultural outcomes including improving soil, biodiversity and vegetation, and increasing the capacity of our farms to adapt to climate change and evolving market demands.

The second phase of the National Landcare Program also supports:

  • Smart Farms – $134 million to support the development and uptake of best practice management, tools and technologies that help farmers, fishers, foresters and regional communities improve the protection, resilience and productive capacity of our soils, water and vegetation, and in turn support successful primary industries and regional communities.
  • Continuing to deliver the Reef 2050 Plan – additional funding towards meeting the Government’s commitment to the Reef 2050 Long-Term Sustainability Plan.
  • Caring for our World Heritage places – funding to help with the management of our treasured World Heritage sites, with a particular focus on addressing critical threats such as feral animals and weeds, and changed fire regimes.
  • Indigenous Protected Areas – $15 million for new Indigenous Protected Areas, in addition to an investment of $93 million for the ongoing support of existing Indigenous Protected Areas.
  • Efforts to eradicate red imported fire ant – funding as part of the Australian Government's contribution to the red imported fire ant eradication program for south-east Queensland.
  • Centre for Invasive Species Solutions – support for the Invasive Animals Cooperative Research Centre's transition into the new Centre for Invasive Species Solutions.
Australian Government funding for World Heritage (2018 to 2023)

World Heritage funding is part of the $1 billion investment in phase 2 of the National Landcare Program. National partnership project agreements provide funding for World Heritage for the period 2018 to 2023:

  • $25.5 million for Tasmania for the Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area
  • $15.4 million for Queensland, comprising
    • $13.5 million for the Wet Tropics of Queensland
    • $725,000 for Fraser Island
    • $725,000 for the Australian Fossil Mammal Sites – Riversleigh
    • $450,000 for Gondwana Rainforests
  • $3.91 million for New South Wales, comprising
    • $1.65 million for Willandra Lakes Region
    • $925,000 for the Greater Blue Mountains
    • $885,000 for Lord Howe Island Group
    • $450,000 for Gondwana Rainforests
  • $2.1 million for Western Australia, comprising
    • $700,000 for Shark Bay
    • $700,000 for Ningaloo Coast
    • $700,000 for Purnululu National Park
  • $500,000 for South Australia for the Australian Fossil Mammal Sites – Naracoorte.

Payments are in accordance with Part 4 of the Federal Financial Relations Act 2009 and consistent with the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999.

Further information is available on the National Landcare Program website.