Accessing biological resources for biodiscovery purposes

Research activities involving access to biological resources are managed in a manner consistent with Australia’s international obligations under the Convention on Biological Diversity.

Within the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park, the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority (GBRMPA) manages the environmental impacts of activities that provide access to biological resources. GBRMPA is not involved in the negotiation of benefit sharing agreements.

Before removing resources from the Marine Park you should determine whether you require a permit from GBRMPA to collect biological resources. If you have a permit, you should resolve any benefit sharing agreements with the Australian and/or Queensland governments.

Permit requirements

Within the Marine Park, activities that provide access to biological resources are managed by the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Zoning Plan 2003, the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Regulations 1983 and associated research policy.

A flowchart outlines if you need a permit to conduct research that involves access to biological resources in the Marine Park.

For further information about permit requirements, contact us at assessments@gbrmpa.gov.au.

For further information about permit requirements under the Queensland Biodiscovery Act 2004, see the Queensland Government website.

Prior to accessing the Marine Park to collect biological resources, you must have resolved with the Australian and Queensland governments any requirements for a benefit sharing agreement.

Benefit sharing agreements

Depending on where you collect within the Marine Park, benefit sharing agreements may be required with the Australian and/or Queensland governments.

If you are accessing resources in Commonwealth waters or on a Commonwealth island, you must negotiate a benefit sharing agreement with the Australian Government.

Contact the Australian Department of the Environment for more information.

If you are seeking to access resources from Queensland waters, a Queensland coast or a Queensland island you will need to obtain a collection authority form and to negotiate a benefit sharing agreement with the Queensland Government.


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