Occupation permits for state forests

Occupation permits allow you to occupy land in any state forest for a fixed term. Occupation permits are granted under Section 35(1)(a) of the Forestry Act 1959 by the chief executive of the Department of Environment and Science (DES).

Uses under occupation permits

Occupation permits will only be granted if the chief executive is satisfied that your proposed use of the land meets the requirements of the relevant legislation and policy.

Occupation permits for state forests in Queensland may be granted for a variety of purposes, including:

  • dams
  • pipelines
  • water storage areas
  • pump sites
  • communications facilities
  • other purposes (including coal seam gas activities).

The DES assesses applications for occupation permits to confirm that the proposed use is appropriate to the site.

An occupation permit will normally not be granted over state forest land if the proposed use:

  • is inconsistent with the management principles for the reserve
  • would endanger or destroy any special values attached to the land
  • would have an adverse impact, directly or indirectly, on Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service (QPWS) management or the rights of other lawful users of the area (including native title rights and interests).

Applying for an occupation permit

You can apply for an occupation permit by:

  • completing the Occupation permit within State Forest application form (contact QPWS.Estate@des.qld.gov.au)
  • providing the name of the state forest or forest reserve and the site within that area where you wish to conduct activities
  • providing a detailed outline of all intended activities within the area and site
  • supplying an environment management plan
  • including a survey plan or A4 map.

You will also need to pay a fee when you lodge your application.

Before making a formal application for an occupation permit, phone 13 QGOV (13 74 68), the regional offices of the QPWS or email QPWS.Estate@des.qld.gov.au to discuss your proposal with the regional staff.

If you have an occupation permit that has expired, a new permit may be issued after a reassessment of the occupancy.

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Small business hotline: 1300 654 687

General enquiries: 13 QGOV (13 74 68)