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Commonwealth approved Light Pollution Resources

Updated: Sep 8, 2021

Below is a list of Australian Government resources that can assist you in determining whether or not lighting projects may need to be referred under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (EPBC Act). In accordance with the EPBC Act, it is an offense to have a significant impact on a Matters of National Environmental Significance (MNES).

  1. To determine whether lighting that is visible outdoors is likely to have a significant impact, you can visit the Environment assessment and approval process to understand how the EPBC Act may or may not apply to your actions.

  2. Use the department’s Protected Matters Search Tool to generate a report that summarises MNES that may occur in, or adjacent to, your project area.

  3. Use the Species Profile and Threats Database (SPRAT) to find out more information about protected species and ecological communities.

  4. The Significant Impact Guidelines can assist in deciding whether or not to submit a referral to the Australian Government for a decision on whether assessment and approval is required under the EPBC Act.

  5. Where artificial lighting may potentially have a significant impact on a MNES, the National Light Pollution Guidelines for Wildlife provides a risk-assessed and adaptive management approach to managing light for the benefit of listed species and ecological communities.

For any lighting project where light is visible outdoors the Six Best Practice Principles and the Risk Assessed and Adaptive Management Approach described in the National Light Pollution Guidelines for Wildlife can be used voluntarily by anyone.

These approaches are useful even where significant impacts to matters protected by the EPBC Act are unlikely or if you just want to figure out how you can minimise your light pollution.

You can find out more about light pollution on the Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment’s webpage.”

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