The removal of vegetation – particularly deep-rooted, long-lasting trees and plants that have a large root system – can increase landslide risk. Land slippage can result in significant damage to buildings and is a risk to life, both on and below the landslide area.

An existing planning permit issued for buildings in areas that are identified as being prone to landslide may include conditions such as protecting and establishing vegetation to assist in minimising the risk of landslide.

In some cases, the design and construction of the building will have been based on a geotechnical or engineering assessment that factored in the establishment or retention of vegetation. While some vegetation can be cleared without a permit in areas prone to landslides, landowners and residents are advised to retain vegetation to minimise landslide risk or to seek expert advice before removing vegetation.


Erosion happens when soil is lost through rain, wind, the repeated movement of people, animals, vehicles and vegetation disturbance.

Identifying landslide and erosion

Some areas prone to landslides or erosion are identified in planning schemes by the Erosion Management Overlay. Not all areas that are prone to landslide or erosion are covered by the Erosion Management Overlay. To find out if your property is in an Erosion Management Overlay you can create a free planning property report from Vic Plan.

For more information about the risk in your area, contact your local council

Page last updated: 10/06/23