A NSW Government website

Secretary's Animal Care and Ethics Committee Circular - March 2022

We are hoping to send out a circular every 1-2 months with information to educate and help researchers using the Secretary’s ACEC understand what is required to comply with the Animal Research Legislation in NSW as well as sharing any useful information we become aware of. We’ll try to keep it short and to the point as we know you are all busy.

Secretary’s ACEC email address 

Please send ALL emails for the ACEC via the secretary.acec@dpi.nsw.gov.au address. This will help make sure your submissions are always seen. Emails sent to personal addresses will not be forwarded on.

Online payment portal coming soon 

In the very near future, we will be introducing an online payment portal for when you are applying for a new or renewal project or for a new annual animal research authority (Annual Report). We will let you know as soon as it’s launched. There will be links to the portal on the Secretary’s ACEC website and on the application and annual renewal forms. Hopefully this will make payments easier for everyone.

Difference between ACEC approval of a project and Accreditation of a business under the Animal Research Act 1985 

The Animal Research Act 1985 requires Corporations undertaking animal research to be accredited under the Act to lawfully carry out animal research. This includes Corporations undertaking wildlife survey work. If the business you work for is not already accredited and you work for a business registered with ASIC, please check with the DPI Compliance Systems & Accreditation Programs unit about whether the business needs to be accredited to lawfully undertake the animal research/survey work you do.

You can email bfs.admin@dpi.nsw.gov.au or phone 02 6552 3000 to check. Press 1 and then ask to speak to someone about Animal Research Accreditation.

The Act also requires the Australian code for the care and use of animals for scientific purposes 8th Edition 2013 (the Code) is complied with.

Under the Code, ACEC approval is required for any animal research projects. Projects are usually approved for 1-3 years period. To prove the ACEC has approved a project and research can be legally carried out, an Animal Research Authority (ARA) is issued by the ACEC, as required by the Act. ARAs last for a maximum of 12 months. To have a new 12-month ARA issued during the project approval period, the ACEC needs to review an Annual Report for the project at a meeting.

Annual Reports must be submitted by the submission deadline for a committee meeting and be submitted to a meeting that is scheduled on a date prior to the 12- month expiry date of the ARA for your project, as research undertaken without a current ARA is a breach of the Animal Research Act 1985. The ARA start date will be the meeting date when your project Annual Report was reviewed or the project’s previous ARA expiry date, if that is later than the meeting.

2022 Secretary’s ACEC meeting dates 

The table below contains the relevant 2022 Secretary’s ACEC meeting dates and the cut off dates by which submissions are due for each meeting.

Meeting d​ates 2022

Deadline for submission to the Executive Officer  

31 January

15 January

14 March

26 February

2 May

15 April

20 June

1 June

1 August

13 July

12 September

24 August

24 October

5 October

12 December

23 November

Please don't hesitate to contact us if you have any queries relating to the information in this circular.


Secretary’s ACEC website