Australia's environment and natural resources are central to our national identity and our economy. But they're under pressure due to:
- climate change
- water scarcity
- poor land management practices
- feral animals and weeds.
Natural resource management (NRM) is about protecting and improving environmental assets. This includes soils, water, vegetation and biodiversity.
We are responsible for NRM by delivering environment and sustainable agriculture programs.
National Landcare Program
The National Landcare Program (NLP) was established in 1990. Although it's evolved since then, our focus has always been to:
- support natural resource management
- support sustainable agriculture
- protect Australia’s biodiversity.
An important part of the program is its robust outcomes-based reporting framework. This has helped us improve monitoring and evaluation of program outcomes.
Findings from a NLP phase one review guided the regional delivery program. It prioritises local community engagement.
We support natural resource management (NRM) programs that involve First Nations Australians in land and sea management. We acknowledge their significant and unique experience and skills.
How we got here
Other government programs have played a part in shaping the way we support landcare and natural resource management practices.
Natural Heritage Trust
In 1997, the Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts established the Natural Heritage Trust (NHT).
Delivered in 2 phases, the government invested almost $3 billion on NRM and environmental protection activities.
Caring for our Country
In 2008, the NHT became the Caring for our Country initiative. It ran until 2013 when it was incorporated into the National Landcare Program.
During this time, we established clear and measurable outcomes. We established timelines and targets for 6 national priority areas. This improved our ability to effectively measure our progress.