Pastoral land condition standards – Western Australia

Page last updated: Thursday, 6 October 2022 - 2:02pm

Please note: This content may be out of date and is currently under review.

The Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development (DPIRD) is using a risk-based framework for monitoring and assessing pastoral stations, to help achieve sustainable pastoral management. The framework applies the principles of ecologically sustainable development (ESD), guides the development of quantitative land condition standards, and provides a risk assessment system to guide good land management.

The West Kimberley is the first region of Western Australia to have land condition standards drafted. DPIRD is currently seeking feedback from West Kimberley stakeholders to finalise the document.

Have your say on the West Kimberley pastoral land condition standards 

West Kimberley stakeholders are encouraged to provide feedback on the Pastoral land condition standards: Conceptual basis and West Kimberley region case study – draft

Before providing your feedback, please review the supporting documents:


To provide feedback, comments or ask a question about the standards:


Feedback closes: 5pm AWST, Friday 2 December 2022.

Development of the framework and land condition standards

The WA Government is changing the way the condition of pastoral lands is monitored and assessed as part of the Government's commitment to pastoral land reform. This change is in response to concern about the condition of areas of the pastoral estate, and an audit by the Office of the Auditor General (OAG).

The OAG "assessed whether there is a coordinated and effective approach to protect the ecological sustainability of pastoral lands" (OAG 2017). The audit concluded the "ecological sustainability of pastoral lands is not adequately protected by the State’s current system of land monitoring and administration", and made several recommendations, including:

  • develop and implement a rigorous compliance program based on regular land condition monitoring that includes a combination of risk-based and systematic inspections, and checks of pastoral lessee annual returns
  • develop and implement a reliable statewide system to monitor changes in land condition within the rangelands
  • develop, publish and circulate policies to prevent the degradation of rangelands and to rehabilitate degraded or eroded rangelands to restore their pastoral potential, as prescribed under the Land Administration Act 1997
  • provide guidance on good practice soil, vegetation, stocking and feral animal management techniques, and rehabilitation techniques, to protect and improve the environmental condition of pastoral lands.

These points also apply to the Soil and Land Conservation Act 1945.

To achieve the Government’s objectives of improving pastoral lands condition and economic opportunities, and to meet the OAG’s recommendations, DPIRD developed the Framework for sustainable pastoral management – Revised edition (Fletcher R 2022), a risk-based framework based on best practice and ESD principles (Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999). The Revised edition has been supplemented with the Framework for sustainable pastoral management – Land condition version.

The risk-based management principles in the framework have guided development of the standards for assessing acceptable condition of key pastures in the West Kimberley.