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Karst area management guidelines

Damage to karst environments, including caves, gorges and sinkholes, means damage to our geodiversity. Comprising 4 critical documents, the NPWS karst area management guidelines work with the objective of preserving numerous karst environments in NSW, while mitigating human impact

Read more about Karst area management guidelines

Highly sensitive karst environments are often unable to withstand even the slightest human impact. Once degraded, karst environments may never recover, and, consequently, their conservation needs to be carefully balanced with human interaction.

For NSW National Parks, protecting karst is a multi-faceted effort, comprising plans and guidelines addressing their special management requirements.

The cave access protocols for Office of Environment and Heritage staff aim to minimise the risk of harm to staff working in caves, as well as to karst itself. 

The guidelines for managing fire on karst stipulate procedures for prescribed burns and fire suppression, so these don’t impact karst values.

The guidelines for controlling weeds on karst ensure weed control activities are environmentally sustainable.

The karst monitoring and evaluation toolkit helps develop karst-specific monitoring and evaluation programs which could assist in mitigating human impacts on karst values.

All these documents acknowledge the particular sensitivity of karst environments as well as their complex and precious ecosystems.

Parks related to this program

Bungonia Gorge, Bungonia National Park. Photo: Sara Fife/Capital Country Tourism