(No. .... of 2013)
S. V. FAUGOO
(No. ..... of 2013)
ENACTED by the Parliament of Mauritius, as follows ¨C
PART I ¨C PRELIMINARY
1. Short title
This Act may be cited as the Native Terrestrial Biodiversity and National Parks Act 2013.
In this Act ¨C
“Advisory Council” means the Native Terrestrial Biodiversity and National Parks Advisory Council established under section 3;
“animal” includes an animal from any species, animal parts or derivatives, fish, aquatic animal, shellfish, shell, coral or egg;
“artificially propagated”, in relation to live plants, means grown from seeds, cuttings, divisions, callus tissues or other plant tissues, spores or other propagules under controlled conditions
means the variability among living organisms from all sources including terrestrial, marine and other aquatic ecosystems and the ecological complexes of which they are part;
includes diversity within species, between species and, of ecosystems;
“bred in captivity” means an offspring bred including eggs, born or otherwise produced in a controlled condition of living organisms that mated or otherwise transmitted their gametes in a controlled environment;
“buffer zone” means an area of land declared as such under section 12;
“CITES” means the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora signed at Washington on 3 March 1973, as amended in Bonn on 22 June 1979, and acceded to by Mauritius on 27 July 1975;
“CITES Secretariat” means the Secretariat of CITES located in Geneva;
“closed reserves” means the protected areas listed in Part A of the Sixteenth
Schedule which are strictly used for the purpose of conservation and protection of native biodiversity;
“closed season”, in relation to any game, means a period during which hunting of that game is prohibited;
means the use of all methods and procedures that are necessary to maintain the natural functions, biodiversity, habitat and amenity of wildlife, national parks and other reserved lands;
includes all activities associated with scientific resources management such as research, census, law enforcement
, habitat restoration, acquisition and maintenance, propagation, live trapping and transplantation;
“controlled environment” means an environment that is manipulated for the purpose of producing animals of a particular species and has boundaries designed to prevent animals, eggs or gametes of that species from entering or leaving the environment;
“country of origin” means the country in which a species has been taken in the wild or born or bred in captivity or artificially propagated, or introduced from the sea;
“derivative”, in relation to an animal, plant or other organism ¨C
means any part, tissue or extract of an animal, plant or other organism, whether fresh, preserved or processed;
includes any chemical compound derived from such part, tissue or extract;
“Director” means the Director of the National Parks and Conservation Service;
“exotic wildlife” means all wildlife introduced in Mauritius
“Fund” means the National Parks and Conservation Fund established under section 46;
“game” means any wildlife listed in the Tenth Schedule;
“game licence” means a licence referred to in section 23;
means capturing, chasing, driving, attracting, following, searching for, trapping, attempting to trap, shooting at, stalking or lying in wait for, any wildlife whether or not the wildlife is subsequently captured, killed, taken or wounded; but
does not include stalking, attracting, searching for or lying in wait for, any wildlife by an unarmed person solely for the purpose of watching or taking pictures of it;
“hunting equipment” means any gun, weapon, implement, apparatus or material which may be used to hunt wildlife or take any product thereof
“international trade” ¨C
means any import, export or re-export of species covered by this Act;
includes any introduction from the sea;
“introduction from the sea” means the transportation or importation into Mauritius of any specimens that are taken, removed or harvested from a marine environment not under the jurisdiction of any State, including the air space above the sea and the sea-bed and the subsoil beneath the sea;
“invasive alien species” refers to animals, micro-organisms and plants whose establishment and spread threaten ecosystems, habitats, species and human beings;
“land” includes ¨C
land covered by the sea or other waters;
the part of the sea or those waters covering such land;
the atmosphere above the surface of such land and which extends downwards to the centre of the earth;
“Management Authority” means the Management Authority established under section 15;
"member" means a member of the Advisory Council;
“Minister” means the Minister to whom responsibility for the subject of agriculture is assigned;
“national park” means any land declared as such under section 11;
“National Parks and Conservation Service” means the National Parks and Conservation Service referred to in section 8;
“native”, in relation to wildlife ¨C
means living or growing naturally in Mauritius;
does not include exotic wildlife;
“nature reserve” has the same meaning as in the Forests and Reserves Act
“occupier” has the same meaning as in the Forests and Reserves Act;
means an officer of the National Parks and Conservation Service;
includes a police officer, forest officer, fisheries officer, customs officer or any person appointed by the Permanent Secretary to enforce this Act;
“open reserves” means areas listed in Part B of the Sixteenth Schedule which provide for conservation, educational and recreational activities;
“owner” has the same meaning as in the Forests and Reserves Act;
“Permanent Secretary” means the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry;
means a permit issued under Parts VI, VII or VIII;
includes a permit or similar authorisation issued by any country in relation to any species specified in the Schedules;
“personal or household effect” includes any dead specimens or parts and derivatives of which belong to a private individual and form part of or are intended to form part of that individual’s possessions;
“plant” includes any species of plant, bark, charcoal, creepers, fibres, firewood, fruit, grass, seeds, spices, seaweed, algae, sea grass or anything that may be obtained from or derived from a plant
“prescribed wildlife” means the species of wildlife listed in the First, Second and Third Schedules;
“protected wildlife” means the species of wildlife listed in the Fourth, Fifth, Sixth, Seventh and Eleventh Schedules;
“re-export” means the export of any specimen that has previously been imported;
“reserved land” ¨C
means any land declared to be a national park or special reserve under section 11;
includes open reserves and closed reserves;
“registered nursery” means a private nursery licensed by the National Parks and Conservation Service to produce and commercialise native plants;
“Rescue Centre” means any premises, facility or place designated by the Management Authority to look after the welfare of living specimens, particularly those that have been confiscated;
“sale” includes hire, barter or exchange;
“Scientific Authority” means the Scientific Authority established under section 17;
“social security officer” means an officer of the Ministry responsible for the subject of social security;
“Special Reserve” means any private land for which an agreement has been entered into under section 11;
“species” includes any species, subspecies or geographically separate population thereof;
“specimen” means any animal or plant, whether alive or dead;
“structure” includes any fence
, road, building, bench, table, fireplace, path marker, boundary marker, sign or any other item built or placed within reserved land;
“vehicle” includes any means of transportation by air, on land or in or on water;
“vulnerable species” means the species listed in the Sixth Schedule;
“wildlife” includes ¨C
any living creature except ¨C
a human being;
a dog or cat;
fish as defined in the Fisheries and Marine Resources Act;
any naturally occurring plants species listed in the Fourth, Fifth, Sixth and Seventh Schedules.
PART II ¨C NATIVE TERRESTRIAL BIODIVERSITY AND NATIONAL PARKS
3. Establishment of Advisory Council
There is established, for the purposes of this Act, a Native Terrestrial Biodiversity and National Parks Advisory Council.
4. Functions of Advisory Council
The Advisory Council shall ¨C
advise the Minister ¨C
on any matter related to native terrestrial biodiversity, national parks and other reserved land, and conservation generally;
on the assessment of the state of wildlife resources and the effect of land use and environmental activities on wildlife and wildlife habitat;
on any related matter referred to it by the Minister;
make recommendations to the Minister for the conservation of wildlife.
5. Composition of Advisory Council
(1) The Advisory Council shall consist of ¨C
the Permanent Secretary or his representative;
(c) a representative of the Ministry responsible for the subject of fisheries;
(d) a representative of the Forestry Service;
(e) a representative of the Prime Minister’s Office;
(f) a representative of the Ministry responsible for the subject of education;
(g) a representative of the Ministry responsible for the subject of environment;
(h) a representative of the Ministry responsible for the subject of housing;
a representative of the Ministry responsible for the subject of local government;
a representative of the Ministry responsible for Rodrigues;
a representative of the Ministry responsible for the subject of tourism;
2 members of the public with wide knowledge on conservation of natural resources;
a person from the private sector or a non-governmental organisation involved in tourism or outdoor recreation
3 persons actively involved in wildlife conservation or environmental protection.
(2) The members referred to in subsections (1)(a), (l), (m) and (n) shall ¨C
(a) be appointed by the Minister;
(b) hold office for a period of one year; and
(c) be eligible for reappointment for a further period of one year.
(3) No member shall take part in or vote on any matter before the Advisory Council in which the member or an immediate relative of the member or a business associate of the member has, directly or indirectly, a pecuniary interest.
6. Meetings of Advisory Council
(1) The Advisory Council shall meet ¨C
(a) at least once every 3 months;
(b) at such time and place as the Chairperson may determine.
(2) Nine members shall constitute a quorum.
(3) The Advisory Council shall regulate its meetings and proceedings in such manner as it may determine.
7. Appointment of subcommittees
The Advisory Council may ¨C
appoint subcommittees consisting of 2 or more members;
co-opt such other persons as it considers appropriate to assist the Council.
PART III ¨C NATIONAL PARKS AND CONSERVATION SERVICE
National Parks and Conservation Service
There shall be a National Parks and Conservation Service which shall consist of such scientific, technical, administrative and other staff as may be appointed to carry out duties under this Act.
The Director of National Parks and Conservation Service
(1) There shall be a Director of National Parks and Conservation Service who shall be a public officer appointed by the Public Service Commission.
(2) The Director shall have administrative control of the National Parks and Conservation Service and perform such other functions as may be assigned to him under this Act and by the Minister.
(3) The Director may, with the approval of the Permanent Secretary, delegate any of his functions to such officer as he may designate.
Functions of Director
The Director shall, subject to this Act ¨C
keep under review the need to reserve land and promote conservation in relation to the use or development of State and private land;
carry out management operations
, research and other activities in connection with the administration of this Act, and in connection with the obligation of international conventions on conservation of native terrestrial biodiversity including the management of reserved land and the conservation of wildlife within a national park;
carry out educational activities and provide and disseminate information on matters arising out of and in connection with the administration of this Act;
prepare and review management plans for reserved lands;
provide the Advisory Council with such information as it may require; and
submit to the Permanent Secretary, for presentation to the Minister, before 30 June of the following year, a report on the activities of the National Parks and Conservation Service in respect of the preceding year.
PART IV ¨C NATIONAL PARKS AND OTHER RESERVES
Proclamation of National Parks and Special Reserves
(1) The President may, by Proclamation, declare any State land, nature reserve, “Pas Géometriques”, or other land to be a national park or other special reserve where ¨C
(a) such land is of natural, scenic, scientific, educational, recreational or other importance or value to the State
the preservation of that land is necessary to protect, permit access to, or allow public viewing or enjoyment of, such land.
(2) Notwithstanding any other enactment, no work or development shall take place on a reserved land unless ¨C
(a) it is approved by the Minister; or
(b) it is permitted under a management plan under section 13.
(3) The Minister may, other than the areas listed in the Sixteenth Schedule, by way of notice published in the Gazette, declare any national park, reserve or part thereof an open or closed reserve.
(4) For the purpose of protecting the habitat of wildlife, the Minister may enter into an agreement with a private landowner.
(5) An agreement under subsection (4) may impose a conservation covenant or easement in respect of land owned by the private landowner.
(6) A conservation covenant or easement may be granted for any of the following purposes ¨C
(a) the protection, enhancement or restoration of natural ecosystems, wildlife habitat or habitat of rare, threatened or endangered plant or animal species;
(b) the retention of significant botanical, zoological, geological or morphological features of land;
(c) the conservation of soil
, air or water.
(7) A conservation covenant or easement shall run with the land and be binding on the landowner and his successors in title.
Buffer zones for reserved lands
(1) The Minister may, by way of notice published in the Gazette, declare any land adjoining a reserved land a buffer zone for that reserved land.
(2) Notwithstanding any other enactment, a buffer zone shall not, except with the approval of the Minister, and subject to such conditions as the Minister may impose, be put to any use which may have a negative effect, whether direct or indirect, on the reserved land, or on plants and animals within the reserved land.
Management plans for reserved lands
(1) The Director shall prepare, for submission to the Minister, a management plan for each area of reserved land and any adjoining buffer zones.
(2) A management plan may relate to part of a reserved land or to more than a part of a reserved land.
(3) A management plan ¨C
(a) shall contain information regarding the relevant reserved land and any adjoining buffer zone, statements of objectives for management and proposals for the management of that land;
(b) may designate zones within the reserved land to which the public shall have access subject to obtaining a written authorisation from the Director.
(4) Subject to the recommendation of the Advisory Council and approval of the Minister, the Director shall ¨C
publish a draft of the management plan; and
cause a notice to be printed in at least 2 local newspapers stating where copies of the draft management plan may be inspected and purchased.
(5) Any person may
, within 60 days from the publication of a notice under subsection (4), make written representations to the Director in relation to the draft management plan.
(6) Following representations made under subsection (5), the Director may make such amendments to the draft management as he considers appropriate.
(7) The Director shall submit the draft management plan, incorporating any amendment made under subsection (6), to the Minister for approval.
(8) A management plan, once approved by the Minister, shall ¨C
come into effect on the publication in the Gazette of a notice confirming the approval;
be published and made available for purchase by any person; and
be binding in relation to the management and use of the reserved land and any adjoining buffer zones.
(9) An approved management plan may be amended or replaced in the same manner as provided for in this section.
Licences and leases on reserved land
(1) Subject to the approval of the Minister, the Director may, subject to such terms and conditions as he considers appropriate, issue licences authorising ¨C
the sale of goods;
the provision of services to visitors;
the carrying out of other activities of a commercial nature, within reserved lands.
(2) A person who wishes to engage in any of the activities specified in subsection (1) shall make a written application to the Director for a licence in such form and manner as the Director may determine.
(3) No person shall, within a reserved land ¨C
(a) sell any good;
(b) provide any service to a visitor for a fee;
(c) carry out any other activity of a commercial nature,
without a licence issued under subsection (1).
(4) No licence issued under subsection (1) shall allow the holder to ¨C
(a) exclusively occupy any area within any reserved land or to erect any building thereon;
(b) use or remove any resources of that land
unless provision for such a licence is included in an approved management plan relating to the land or, where there is no management plan, the Minister is satisfied that the licence is not inconsistent with the purposes for which the reserve was established.
(5) Subject to the approval of the Minister, the Director may, on such terms and conditions as he considers appropriate, grant leases to use or occupy reserved land, or to undertake such activities as he may determine, provided the purpose of such leases is not inconsistent with the purpose for which the land has been reserved.
(6) A lease granted under subsection (5) shall be for a term not exceeding 7 years but may be renewed with the approval of the Minister.
(7) No lease granted under subsection (5) shall allow the holder
(a) exclusively occupy any area within any reserved land or erect any building thereon;
(b) use or remove any resources of that land,
unless provision for such a lease is included in an approved management plan relating to that reserved land.