What is a weed?

A weed is an invasive species of a plant which has been targeted for control because it has, or could have a negative economic, environmental or social impact in NSW.

In NSW all plants are regulated with a general biosecurity duty to prevent, eliminate or minimise any biosecurity risk they may pose. Any person who deals with any plant, who knows (or ought to know) of any biosecurity risk, has a duty to ensure the risk is prevented, eliminated or minimised, so far as is reasonably practicable.

The NSW Biosecurity Act 2015 (the Biosecurity Act), came into effect 1 July 2017. It repeals the NSW Noxious Weeds Act 1993. Priority weeds will no longer be defined as “noxious” and the noxious class listings will no longer apply. For more information on the changes, download the fact sheet.


What can you do?

Weeds are a major threat to our unique natural environment, threatening the survival of hundreds of native plants and animals in NSW alone. They also impact on the price of food, human health through allergies and asthma, recreational activities and the NSW economy. There are simple things you can do to help reduce the major impacts of weeds, and limit their spread. Early detection and surveillance offer the most strategic and cost effective form of weeds management. Early detection of weeds increases the likelihood that control will be successful and reduces costs as infestations can be treated when they are less extensive. You can help with early detection of weedy plants by knowing what to look for, where to look, when to look, and who to contact. If you believe you have found a weed or would like more information about a weed, please contact Strathfield Council on 9748 9999 and ask the Biosecurity Officer.

Weed Categories:

Unlike the Noxious Weed Act 1993 that is now repealed by the Biosecurity Act 2015, weeds are categorised on a risk based assessment for the state and regional level and most weeds are not subject to a general list. 

  • State level determined priority weeds
  • Greater Sydney Regional priority weeds
  • General Biosecurity Duty for all plants

For the Strathfield Council area the State and Regional level determined priority weeds are found in the Local Land Services Greater Sydney Regional Strategic Weed Management Plan 2017 – 2022 under Appendix 1 & 2.

If you are unsure about the legal requirement of a plant species please refer to NSW Weed Wise. This site lists over 300 weeds species that includes profile, control and legal requirements.  Alternatively you may contact Council’s Biosecurity Weed Officer on 9748 9999.