Streamlining Commonwealth and State Environmental approvals

The Commonwealth Government’s Assessment Bilateral Agreement Draft Conditions Policy (Draft Conditions Policy) seeks to improve the efficiency of assessment bilateral agreements under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (Cth) (EPBC Act). In particular, the Draft Conditions Policy seeks to minimise unnecessary duplication between state, territory and Commonwealth conditions on environmental approvals. The Draft…

Bilateral agreements under the EPBC Act: How easy is it to cut green tape? (Part 1)

Overlapping State and Commonwealth approval requirements leading to project risks The environmental approval process under the Commonwealth’s Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (EPBC Act) operates in parallel to State-based approval processes, such as the development consent process under the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979 (NSW) (EP&A Act). That means that, for example, a…

Let’s face it, (house) size matters

Future battlelines for town planning will increasingly being waged on economic criteria.  In a blog critique to Thomas Piketty’s Book, Capital in the Twenty-First Century, Matthew Rognlie, a 26-year-old graduate student at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, made headlines in the Economist for his arguments that it is homeownership that leads to rising inequality. One…