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…

Another Bill passes

In our blog on 27 October 2014, we told you about the new changes to the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979 (NSW) (Planning Act) that were proposed by the Environmental Planning and Assessment Amendment Bill 2014 (NSW). That Bill has now passed both Houses of Parliament, having received assent on 19 November 2014. Other…

New environment enforcement laws have now passed

In our blog on 2 September 2014 we told you to watch out for new environmental enforcement laws proposed by the Protection of the Environment Legislation Amendment Bill 2014. That Bill has now passed both Houses of Parliament, having received assent on 28 October 2014. That means that the proposed changes will shortly come into…

Keeping regular: water users anticipate ease of burden

The Water Management Amendment Act 2014 (NSW) was passed without amendment on 17 September 2014 and contains some important changes to how water is accessed and licensed in NSW. The amendments are intended to ease the regulatory burden on water users and assist the Government to meet challenges in managing the State’s water resources that have…

Watch out for new environmental enforcement laws

The Protection of the Environment Legislation Amendment Bill 2014, introduced to the Legislative Assembly on 12 August, proposes to strengthen NSW environmental enforcement laws, and introduces the concept of ‘restorative justice’ into environmental enforcement. ‘Restorative justice’ is described in the second reading speech for the Bill as a process that: “brings together both an offender…