Introducing the Inspector-General of Biosecurity
The former Minister for Agriculture and Northern Australia appointed Dr Lloyd Klumpp as the Inspector-General of Biosecurity (IGB) from 25 July 2022. This is a part-time position.
Lloyd started his career as a veterinarian in mixed agricultural practice.
After 25 years in the private sector, often working to deliver government Biosecurity programs, Lloyd joined the Victorian Department of Primary Industries as a Veterinary Officer eventually becoming the Director of the Operations Branch of Biosecurity Victoria.
Until recently, Lloyd was the General Manager of Biosecurity Tasmania, a position he held for nine years. Biosecurity Tasmania is the division of the Tasmanian Government responsible for maintaining Tasmania’s biosecurity system.
In that role, Lloyd represented Tasmania on many national committees and boards including the National Biosecurity Committee (NBC). He participated in many of the NBC’s sub-committees including as Chair of the National Biosecurity Emergency Preparedness Expert Group.
Lloyd has also held the positions of Chair of the National Fruit Fly Council and Chair of Tasmania’s Marine Farming Planning Review Panel.
Lloyd has participated and taken a leading role in many biosecurity emergency responses in both the animal and plant sectors including Victoria’s Equine Influenza response in 2007 and the Tasmanian Queensland fruit fly response in 2018.
Lloyd has always been a strong advocate for the national biosecurity system.
The Biosecurity Act 2015 and Biosecurity Regulation 2016 define the IGB role, authority and independent powers of review. This includes reviewing the Director of Biosecurity’s performance of functions and exercise of powers. The Secretary of the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry is the Director of Biosecurity.
The Inspector-General makes recommendations for system improvements and provides an assurance framework for stakeholders.
If requested by stakeholders, the Inspector-General may also review the department’s process for preparing draft biosecurity import risk assessments.
The Inspector-General provides reports to the Federal Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry and publishes these on the Inspector-General of biosecurity’s website—unless they contain information that is considered prejudicial to the public interest.
The Inspector-General is independent of the Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry and the Director of Biosecurity. However, the Inspector-General may:
- consider the minister’s request for a review; and/or
- seek immediate action from the Director of Biosecurity (or senior departmental executives) and the minister to protect or enhance the integrity of Australia’s biosecurity systems.
Australia’s biosecurity system relies on various government programs, in cooperation with industry, to ensure the safe international movement of people and goods. These programs minimise the risk of the entry, establishment and spread of exotic pests and diseases that could cause significant harm to people, animals, plants and Australia’s unique environment.
The Inspector-General’s mission is to enhance the integrity of Australia’s biosecurity systems through independently evaluating and verifying the performance of these programs across the biosecurity continuum—pre-border, at the border and post-border.
The Inspector-General has authority to review biosecurity risk management measures and systems that:
- are prescribed under the Biosecurity Act 2015 and are the responsibility of the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry
- relate to human health and are undertaken by Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry on behalf of the Department of Health.
The Inspector-General’s scope does not extend to Australia’s national biosecurity policies, international trade issues and market access opportunities.
Responsibilities and functions
The Inspector-General sets an annual review program in writing, in consultation with the Director of Biosecurity and the Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry. This review program is available on the Inspector-General’s website.
The Inspector-General may liaise with stakeholders, including the Australian Government Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry, the Department of Home Affairs, and the Department of Health, state and territory authorities and agencies, overseas authorities and agencies, and companies and individuals.
Australian Government departments must provide reasonable access to documents, staff and facilities to allow the Inspector-General to undertake his functions. Under the Act, the Inspector-General may require a person to answer questions, give information in writing or produce documents relevant to a review, within a certain time frame.
When conducting a review, the Inspector-General may invite written submissions from the public or organisations on a subject area and publish them as part of a transparent review process.
On 25 September 2007 the Hon. Ian Callinan AC was appointed commissioner by the then Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry, under section 66AY of the Quarantine Act 1908, to conduct an independent inquiry into the outbreak of equine influenza in Australia. Mr Callinan delivered the final report to the Australian Government on 25 April 2008.
In response to the Callinan report recommendations, the government appointed Dr Kevin Dunn as Inspector-General of Horse Importation on 11 September 2008.
In April 2008 the government appointed Mr Roger Beale AO to lead the Review of Australia's Quarantine and Biosecurity Arrangements. In its preliminary response to the Beale review the government agreed to establish a statutory office of the Inspector-General of Biosecurity. The IGB would absorb the role of the Inspector-General of Horse Importation and incorporate the intent of the independent audit function recommended by the Callinan report.
On 1 July 2009 the government appointed Dr Dunn as the Interim Inspector-General of Biosecurity pending creation of a statutory position. Dr Dunn was succeeded on 30 June 2013 by Dr Michael Bond, who retired on 29 April 2016.
The position of Inspector-General of Biosecurity was formally established under s 566A the Biosecurity Act 2015 (the Act), which came into force on 16 June 2016. On 25 July 2016 Dr Helen Scott-Orr was appointed first Inspector-General of Biosecurity under the Act. She was succeeded by Mr Rob Delane who commenced a 3-year term on 25 July 2019.
On 29 March 2022, Dr Lloyd Klumpp was appointed by the then Minister for Agriculture and Northern Australia to succeed Mr Rob Delane on 25 July 2022 for a 3-year term.