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Conservation covenants on private land: issues with measuring and achieving biodiversity outcomes in Australia

posted on 2016-10-01, 00:00 authored by James FitzsimonsJames Fitzsimons, C Ben Carr
Conservation on private land will be essential for many countries if they are to achieve the target of at least 17 percent of terrestrial and inland waters protected in a representative manner by 2020, in accordance with obligations under the Convention on Biological Diversity. Conservation covenants and easements have already become essential tools to secure biodiversity outcomes on private land in many countries including South Africa, the European Union, and the USA, and the role of these mechanisms will become increasingly important to meet this international target. In Australia, conservation of biodiversity on private land has been an important policy objective for the past few decades. This has been matched with a significant investment in biodiversity conservation efforts in Australia through national funding of programs such as Caring for our Country, the Natural Heritage Trust, and the National Action Plan for Salinity and Water Quality. While there are multiple mechanisms used to achieve this, conservation covenants are the primary mechanism used to protect natural assets on private land in the long term. A conservation covenant is a binding agreement (usually entered into on a voluntary basis) between a landowner and an authorized body to help the landowner protect and manage the environment on their property.


Title of book

A changing landscape: the conservation easement reader


514 - 523


Environmental Law Institute

Place of publication

Washington, D.C.





Publication classification

B1 Book chapter

Copyright notice

2016, Environmental Law Institute


Laurie Ristino, Jessica Jay