Department of the Environment and Water Resources, September 2007
About this fact sheet
The Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (the EPBC Act) establishes the National Heritage List, which includes natural, Indigenous and historic places that are of outstanding heritage value to the nation. The Act also establishes the Commonwealth Heritage List, which comprises natural, Indigenous and historic places on Commonwealth lands and waters or under Australian Government control, and determined by the Minister for the Environment and Water Resources (the Minister) as having Commonwealth Heritage values. Under the Act, the Australian Heritage Council (the Council) is the Australian Government’s expert advisory body on heritage matters.
What is natural heritage?
Our natural heritage comprises the components of the natural environment that have aesthetic, historic, scientific or social significance or other special value for future generations, as well as for the present community.
Places in these lists may have diverse values. They may feature exceptional species richness, such as the Stirling Range National Park in Western Australia. They may form a unique snapshot in time, such as the Dinosaur Stampede at Lark Quarry. Or they may show spectacular geological features, such as the volcanic landscape of the Warrumbungle National Park.
The places that feature these important values may be owned by the Australian Government or state or local governments, by businesses, voluntary or other organisations, or by private groups or individuals.