Climate ChangeTraditionalBiodiversityPublicReviewRegional

Climate Change Legislation and Policy

The Climate Change Act 2017 lays the foundations for Victoria to achieve net zero emissions and enable a climate resilient community and economy. It places obligations on Victorian Government decision makers and provides guidance to all stakeholders on responding to the impacts of climate change.

Victoria’s Climate Change Adaptation Plan 2017–2020 is helping the State, including the alpine resorts, prepare for the impacts of climate change. It establishes the following principles for good adaptation:
• Informed decision-making;
• Integrated decision-making;
• Risk management;
• Complementarity;
• Equity; and
• Community engagement

Traditional Owner Legislation and Policy

The nature of the State of Victoria’s relationship with Traditional Owners is binding and based on a meaningful partnership founded on mutual respect. The Gunaikurnai (Mt Baw Baw and part of Mt Hotham), the Taungurung (Mt Buller, Mt Stirling, part of Lake Mountain and part of Mt Hotham) and the Wurundjeri people (part of Lake Mountain) are the recognised Traditional Owners of a majority of Victoria’s alpine resorts land.

Gunaikurnai achieved legal recognition of connection to Country and rights as Traditional Owners in 2010 when it was granted Native Title by the Federal Court of Australia. As part of the native title settlement package, Gunaikurnai also entered into a Recognition and Settlement Agreement with the State of Victoria.

In addition to the Settlement Agreement with Gunaikurnai, the State of Victoria has also entered into a Recognition and Settlement Agreement with the Taungurung people. The Recognition and Settlement Agreements, executed under the Traditional Owner Settlement Act 2010, afford Traditional Owners certain rights relating to the use of public land within their Agreement area, including alpine resorts land.

Gunaikurnai, Taungurung and Wurundjeri have Registered Aboriginal Party status under the Aboriginal Heritage Act 2006 over the majority of Victoria’s alpine resorts land.

There are several groups that identify as Traditional Owners in the greater north-eastern alpine area (including Falls Creek resort and the northern section of Mt Hotham resort): this area is not currently within Native Title, Recognition and Settlement Agreements nor Registered Aboriginal Party boundaries.

Biodiversity Legislation and Policy

Biodiversity 2037 is Victoria’s plan to stop the decline of our native plants and animals, and improve our natural environment so it is healthy, valued and actively cared for. Biodiversity 2037 is underpinned by the Flora and Fauna Guarantee Act 1988 and the Native Vegetation Clearing Regulations and together these instruments ensure that Victoria has a modern and effective approach to protecting and managing our biodiversity

The Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (EPBC Act) is the Australian Government’s key piece of environmental legislation. The EPBC Act enables the Australian Government to join with the states and territories in providing a national scheme of environment and heritage protection and biodiversity conservation.

Public Participation in Government Decision-making: Better Practice Guide

The Public Participation in Government Decision-making: Better practice guide (Better Practice Guide) was released by the Victorian Auditor-General’s Office in 2017. The process of developing this guide involved extensive research and consultation. It highlighted recurring challenges that public sector agencies face in undertaking public participation exercises.

In addition to the Better Practice Guide, DELWP has developed a Community Charter. The purpose of the Community Charter is to guide DELWP and its entities (including the ARCC) in delivering meaningful, inclusive and effective stakeholder engagement.

Review of the Alpine Resorts Strategic Plan – 2012

The ARCC led a review of the 2012 Alpine Resorts Strategic Plan in 2017. Five of the 12 recommendations made following this review related to future strategic planning in Victoria’s alpine sectors, and these recommendations informed the development of this strategic plan, including:
• collaborative consultation with all key stakeholders in order to build a collective approach to and stakeholder ownership over plan implementation;
• development of high-level strategic priorities and guidance;
• alignment with relevant strategies, policies and strategy documents;
• strengthening of monitoring, reporting and review processes; and
• strengthening of the representation of Traditional Owners in alpine resorts governance.

Regional Tourism Review

At the time of consultation and finalising this ARSP, the Victorian Government announced a Regional Tourism Review.

The review will take a broad look at regional tourism in Victoria with a range of goals to help build on what has already been established by the businesses and communities of Victoria’s local towns.

The findings and recommendations from this review may result in changes to the way Victoria manages and invests in its regional tourism sector. This could include: • the structure and function of regional tourism bodies;
• the way regional tourism marketing is funded and delivered;
• the delivery of regional tourism infrastructure;
• an increased focus on natural and cultural sites to grow visitation; and
• improved co-ordination between public sector entities.

The Strategic Plan will be flexible and adaptative in responding to changes in the regional visitation sector and will be reviewed and updated (if necessary) following the Government finalising its response to the review.