Plant and animal pests, and diseases pose a significant threat to our environment and cultural places.
In 2011 the TSRA established the Torres Invasive Species Advisory Group which includes the Department of Agriculture and Water Resources (DAWR), Queensland Biosecurity (QDAF) Torres Shire Council (TSC), Northern Peninsula Area Regional Council (NPARC) and Torres Strait Islands Regional Council (TSIRC) representatives. One of the major outcomes of the collaboration of this group was in 2014 to agree to the need to develop a Biosecurity Plan and Individual Island action plans for the region.
|The Biosecurity Plan has been developed in close collaboration with all stakeholders who have responsibility for the management of biosecurity in the region. This includes all levels of government, Traditional Owners (through RNTBCs) and island communities who have worked together to determine the key biosecurity issues, threats, strategies and actions required to deal with invasive species.
|The Torres Strait Island Biosecurity Action Plans 2018-2023 can be viewed here.
A number of Environmental Health staff are authorised under the Biosecurity Act 2014.
In 2016 a working group was formed including representatives from the federal and state departments responsible for agriculture, health, environment and local agencies - TSRA, TSIRC, TSC and NPARC. This working group provided a forum to:
- Identify agreed objectives and activities to address gaps in prevention, preparedness, response and ongoing management of exotic pests of regional and national significance
- Develop an overarching Torres Strait and Northern Peninsula Areas Biosecurity Strategy that builds on and complements existing strategies/plans and identifies roles and responsibilities and required resources to develop and implement the strategy
- Assess the outcomes of a regional approach to biosecurity risk management, including the level of support from traditional owners for such an approach
- Propose appropriate governance and coordination arrangements to ensure the benefits of a regional biosecurity strategy are delivered
- Prepare advice for consideration by relevant decision makers on a regional approach to biosecurity management, including early deliverables to support such an approach.
The resulting Torres Strait and Northern Peninsula Area Biosecurity Strategy outlines mechanisms to achieve improved biosecurity in the region, promoting biosecurity awareness and building local biosecurity management capacity.
Environmental Health Workers undertake pest and weed treatments across the divisions, on a fee for service basis, most EHW are qualified and licenced Pest Management Technicians under the Pest Management Act 2001.
Fact sheets about biosecurity requirements when travelling within or to the Torres Strait are available by clicking the following links;