Consultative Committee on Emergency Plant Pests (CCEPP)

​​The CCEPP is Australia's key technical body for coordinating national responses to emergency plant pest (EPP) incursions, and assessing the technical feasibility for their eradication.

The CCEPP is convened in response to a plant biosecurity incident, under the Emergency Plant Pest Response Deed. The Deed is under the custodianship of Plant Health Australia, and contains the terms of reference for the CCEPP.

Committee's role in respect of an emergency plant pest

To effectively and efficiently coordinate the national technical response to emergency plant pests (EPPs), and to advise meetings of the National Management Group (NMG) on EPP issues in accordance with the Emergency Plant Pest Response Deed.

Terms of reference

The Committee is the key technical coordinating body providing the link between the Commonwealth, states and territories, industry, Plant Health Australia and the NMG for plant pest emergencies.

Under the Deed, the Committee has specific responsibilities that include to:

  • receive formal notifications from government Parties on Incidents
  • determine if the Incident concerns an EPP
  • advise the NMG if a Response Plan is required
  • make recommendations to the NMG in respect of the detail of a Response Plan
  • consider regular reports on progress of a Response Plan and develop a Consensus on further actions required
  • with regard to any baselines agreed pursuant to clause 14.1.2, advise the NMG in respect of clause 9.1.1(b) as to the investigation and diagnostic costs that are relevant and reasonable in the circumstances of the Incident Definition Phase of the Response Plan
  • provide regular consolidated reports to the Affected Parties, and to the NMG, on the status of a Response Plan
  • i​n circumstances where rapid eradication of an EPP is judged no longer feasible, provide advice and recommendations to NMG on when cost sharing should no longer apply and on options for alternative arrangements
  • determine and advise the NMG when an EPP has been eradicated under a Response Plan
  • recommend when proof of freedom has been achieved following the successful implementation of a Response Plan.

Standing representatives of plant health agencies

Standing representatives of Commonwealth, state and territory plant health agencies are:

  • all state and territory Chief Plant Health Managers or equivalent (or their nominees)
  • one representative from Biosecurity Australia and the department (non-voting)
  • a representative of Plant Health Australia (non-voting).

Members representing relevant industry parties

In advance of the determination of a Response Plan, the Industry Parties will each provide to the Committee’s secretariat two nominees who will join the Committee immediately in an emergency affecting their crop, crops or sub-group of crops and they will have the right to vote. The nominees will comprise:

  • a representative nominated in advance by the Industry Parties collectively but drawn from an organisation that is a member of Plant Health Australia
  • a technical representative nominated by the relevant industry(ies).

Chairperson

The Chief Plant Protection Officer within the department convenes and chairs meetings of the Committee. The chairperson has the right to vote.

Observers/resource persons

Members may be accompanied by advisers who have specific expertise but these persons will not be party to decisions. A person with relevant health, environment and amenity flora expertise may also be invited to attend Committee meetings if appropriate to the emergency. However, the number of observers/resource persons must be kept to the essential minimum. All attendees must be announced and recorded as ‘present’ in the minutes. Members are responsible for ensuring that the observers that they invite abide by the requirements of the Committee’s Operating Guidelines.

Meetings

  • Decisions must be taken by Consensus
  • Whichever Party provides the Chair of the Committee will provide its secretariat services, and will provide reports of meetings to each of the Affected Parties
  • The Committee may meet face to face, by teleconference, by video link or by email