Science and Research

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Wandering Albatross in flight (Diomedea exulans). Photo: Michael Double.
Wandering Albatross in flight (Diomedea exulans)
Australian National Botanic Gardens.
Australian National Botanic Gardens
Birds flock to Coongie Lakes Ramsar site in flood. Photo: Chris Schweizer.
Birds flock to Coongie Lakes Ramsar site in flood
Egg collection
Bird and egg collection
Gondwana Rainforests of Australia. Photo: Paul Candlin.
Toolona Creek, Lamington National Park
Project Eden predator-proof fence. Photo: Nick Rains.
Predator-proof fence, Shark Bay region

Science and research plays an important part in the protection of biodiversity. The department takes advice from scientists and administers a range of programs and facilities involved in scientific research into the conservation and sustainable use of Australia's biodiversity.

Australia's biodiversity science and research​

Organisations and programs

Research permits

Permits are required under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (EPBC Act) for:

  • research activities in Commonwealth Parks and reserves
  • research activities that affect threatened species or communities in Commonwealth areas
  • whales, dolphins and porpoises in Commonwealth waters and outside Australian waters
  • the import and export of plants, animals and other organisms
  • research activities involving protected species in the Territories of Christmas Island, Cocos (Keeling) Islands and Coral Sea Islands

Export or import of specimens for research purposes

The non-commercial export or import of a specimen may be approved for scientific research if the project will result in a better understanding or increased knowledge: of the taxon; of the conservation of biodiversity; or of the maintenance and/or improvement of human health.


The NPI now has 15 years of data on industrial emissions of 93 substances. Search NPI data
Please note close date of applications has been extended to COB Friday 2 May 2014.
New Program Rules and Online Application Form templates available. Applications close 28 April 2014.
Following the success of our 2012 partnership with The Winston Churchill Memorial Trust, the ABRS has again partnered with the Trust to offer two fellowships in 2014 to undertake overseas taxonomic research on the Australian flora and fauna. Applications close 19 February 2014.

The Cleaner Environment Plan

The Australian Government's Plan for a Cleaner Environment - Clean Air, Clean Land, Clean Water and National Heritage​ - will help realise the vision of a great society by protecting and improving our environment for future generations.​

State of the Environment reporting

In Australia, State of the Environment (SoE) reporting occurs at both the national and state/territory level.