Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS)
South Wales Fauna Panel, the original NSW fauna conservation authority,
which subsequently was encompassed within the National Parks and
Wildlife Service (NPWS), on its establishment in 1967, first considered
and proposed a nature reserve over Wingecarribee Swamp in the early
1960s as a response to an application for a Crown lease to mine
peat in the swamp (see map).
recognised the very significant scientific, natural and cultural
values of the swamp and proposed the establishment of a wildlife
refuge and subsequently, a nature reserve over the swamp in the
late 1960s. NPWS has pursued this objective since it first prepared
a reference statement (statement of natural, cultural and historical
values, and interest in the land), in 1967 and referenced the area
to other agencies in 1968.
of the swamp involved the forwarding of the reference statement
(see chronology) to the Sydney Metropolitan
Water; Sewerage and Drainage Board (MWSDB), (now SWC Corporation),
the Lands Department (now Dept. of Land and Water Conservation)
and the Department of Mines (now Dept of Mineral Resources). The
Dept. of Mines objected to the nature reserve proposal and mining
leases were subsequently granted for a term of 21 years from 1971
to 1992. Following expiry of the leases mining has continued under
the Mining Act provisions which provide for continuation of mining
until a decision is made by the Minister for Mineral Resources to
either renew or cancel the leases.
again referenced the swamp to the Dept of Mines in 1969 for the
establishment of a nature reserve for that part of the swamp which
was not to be inundated by the waters of Wingecarribee Dam which
was to be constructed in 1972.
of Mines again objected, as peat mining was to continue over part
of the swamp for the term of the mining leases (21 years)...
a number of factors including the transfer of tenure from the NSW
Lands Department to the Sydney Water Board, the construction of
Wingecarribee Dam, objections from the Department of Mineral Resources
and their approval of mining leases over the swamp, it was not possible
to proceed to gazettal of a nature reserve. It was anticipated in
1992 that upon the expiry of the mining leases the nature reserve
proposal could be finalised.
has over the years maintained the objective to establish a nature
reserve at the earliest possible date and has continued to pursue
this objective to the present time.
of the Water Board, establishing the Sydney Water Corporation (SWC)
further delayed consideration of the nature reserve proposal. Under
the Corporatisation Act, the NPWS and SWC were to be joint sponsors
of plans of management for all designated "Special Areas" around
SWC reservoirs and Wingecarribee Swamp.
plan of management has been prepared for Wingecarribee Swamp (1995/96).
It was developed with the consideration that any management actions
carried out are done 50 within the context of the swamp becoming
a nature reserve in the short-term.
Parks and Wildlife Service, Submission to the Mining Wardens Inquiry
into Possible Renewal of Mining Leases for the Extraction of Peat
from Wingecarribee Swamp, 1997, Exhibit 23, pp. 3-4.