Unit of competency details

AHCARB504A - Develop a tree protection program (Release 1)


Usage recommendation:
Is superseded by AHCARB504 - Develop an arboricultural impact assessment reportThis unit is not equivalent to AHCARB504A Develop a tree protection plan 26/Jun/2016
Supersedes RTF4016A - Plan a tree protection program09/Jun/2011

Release Status:
ReleaseRelease date
1 1 (this release) 10/Jun/2011

Training packages that include this unit


SchemeCodeClassification value
ASCED Module/Unit of Competency Field of Education Identifier 050301 Horticulture  

Classification history

SchemeCodeClassification valueStart dateEnd date
ASCED Module/Unit of Competency Field of Education Identifier 050301 Horticulture  04/Nov/2011 
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Modification History

Not Applicable

Unit Descriptor

Unit descriptor 

This unit covers the process of developing a program for the protection of trees and defines the standard required to: assess condition of trees on site; assess impacts of development on trees; determine tree protection zones; determine suitable protection methods; document arboriculture assessment report; develop a tree protection plan and guidelines; develop/document tree management guidelines.

Application of the Unit

Application of the unit 

This unit applies to the process of planning and developing a tree protection program for trees on development sites. Responsibility for, and limited organisation of the work of others in the tree protection program, may be involved. Developing tree protection programs requires a broad range of skills, and the application of extensive horticultural knowledge in areas such as tree protection.

Licensing/Regulatory Information

Not Applicable


Prerequisite units 

Employability Skills Information

Employability skills 

This unit contains employability skills.

Elements and Performance Criteria Pre-Content

Not Applicable

Elements and Performance Criteria



1. Undertake assessment of trees on site

1.1. Relevant legislation is identified and researched.

1.2. Site is inspected.

1.3. Trees are located from site plans or working drawings to enable their identification.

1.4. Each tree in the program is assessed.

2. Provide design input

2.1. Trees are assessed for suitability for retention for the purpose of site design.

2.2. Optimal tree protection zone is determined for trees to be retained.

2.3. Design input relevant to retained trees is provided to the client or management.

3. Assess impact of development on trees

3.1. Existing plans and working drawings are interpreted.

3.2. Impact of proposed development on trees is determined.

3.3. Trees to be retained and removed are finalised and recorded.

4. Determine tree protection zones

4.1. Optimal tree protection zone is re-evaluated.

4.2. Site access and relevant logistics are assessed.

4.3. Available/actual tree protection zone is defined and recorded.

4.4. Additional remedial measures required are determined.

5. Develop protection measures and advise client

5.1. Appropriate protection measure techniques/systems to minimise impact are designed or developed.

5.2. Advice on tree removal and tree pruning is provided to client or management.

6. Document the relevant reports

6.1. An arboriculture assessment report is prepared.

6.2. Tree protection plans and guidelines are developed.

6.3. Tree management guidelines are prepared and documented.

6.4. Relevant reports, plans and guidelines are consolidated and presented to the client, management or relevant stakeholders.

Required Skills and Knowledge


This section describes the skills and knowledge required for this unit.

Required skills 

  • identify an extensive range of trees
  • assess trees
  • interpret plans
  • determine tree protection zones
  • determine suitable protection methods
  • assess condition of trees on site
  • assess impacts of development on trees
  • use literacy skills to fulfil job roles as required by the organisation. The level of skill may range from reading and understanding documentation to completion of written reports
  • use oral communication skills/language competence to fulfil the job role as specified by the organisation including questioning, active listening, asking for clarification, negotiating solutions and responding to a range of views
  • use numeracy skills to estimate, calculate and record complex workplace measures
  • use interpersonal skills to work with others and relate to people from a range of cultural, social and religious backgrounds and with a range of physical and mental abilities.

Required knowledge 

  • effects on trees due to permanent and temporary changes in their environment
  • principles and techniques relating to the selection and implementation of protection programs
  • principles of tree protection devices
  • principles and methods of mechanical and chemical damage control
  • principles and methods relating to protecting trees from human activities
  • anatomy and physiology of trees
  • diseases of trees
  • development and design language
  • relevant legislation that may impact on a tree pruning program \
  • local government tree protection and preservation regulations
  • AS4373-2007 Pruning of amenity trees
  • relevant Code of Practice
  • Draft AS 4970 Protection of Trees on Development sites
  • requirements of Statutory authorities relevant to trees on the development site.

Evidence Guide


The evidence guide provides advice on assessment and must be read in conjunction with the performance criteria, required skills and knowledge, range statement and the Assessment Guidelines for the Training Package.

Overview of assessment 

Critical aspects for assessment and evidence required to demonstrate competency in this unit 

The evidence required to demonstrate competency in this unit must be relevant to workplace operations and satisfy holistically all of the requirements of the performance criteria and required skills and knowledge and include achievement of the following:

  • assess condition of trees on site
  • assess impacts of development on trees
  • determine tree protection zones
  • determine suitable protection methods
  • document arboriculture assessment report
  • develop a tree protection plan and guidelines
  • develop/document tree management guidelines.

Context of and specific resources for assessment 

Competency requires the application of work practices under work conditions. Selection and use of resources for some worksites may differ due to the regional or enterprise circumstances.

Range Statement


The range statement relates to the unit of competency as a whole.

Trees may include:

  • all species of trees and woody tree like vegetation forms that require protection from chemical, environmental, physical or other threats.

Protection devices may include:

  • tree guards
  • root barriers
  • other plantings
  • soil covering
  • traffic re-direction
  • barriers, bunting and flagging
  • temporary fencing, bollards and vehicle barriers.

Protection program may include:

  • location and site plans
  • drawings
  • equipment requirements
  • access details
  • species requirements
  • installation and construction plans
  • maintenance requirements
  • protection methods
  • personnel requirements
  • location of services
  • work schedules
  • timeframes
  • budgets
  • debris disposal procedures
  • Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) issues.

Unit Sector(s)

Unit sector 


Co-requisite units

Co-requisite units 

Competency field

Competency field