In 2001, the Perth Biodiversity Project (PBP) was launched to assist local governments to strategically plan for the retention, protection and management of Perth’s biodiversity. The PBP was delivered by the Western Australian Local Government Association (WALGA) in partnership with 31 local governments, the Department for Planning and Infrastructure and the Swan Catchment Council (Perth Region NRM), along with funding from the Commonwealth Government’s $3 billion Natural Heritage Trust (NHT). The project supported local government biodiversity conservation efforts in the Swan Region through direct financial aid for on-ground works and capacity building projects, as well as providing expert and technical information, advice and aid for local biodiversity planning.
In 2004, WALGA published the Local Government Biodiversity Planning Guidelines for the Perth Metropolitan Region which have been endorsed by the Environmental Protection Authority and the Western Australia Planning Commission. The Guidelines included templates for natural area assessments for recording ecological values and management issues for bushland reserves managed by local government. To date, sixteen local governments in the Perth Metropolitan Region with more than 20 hectares of bushland reserves under their management have used the Natural Area Initial Assessment (NAIA) templates to record their ecological values and management issues.
In 2010 the Perth Biodiversity Project was awarded the United Nations Association of Australia (Victoria Division) (UNAA) World Environment Day Award. The Award acknowledged their continuous effort in assisting local government in the internationally recognised global hotspot for biodiversity conservation and a commitment to effective conservation at the local level.