Auditor General’s report on DMIRS and DWER compliance and enforcement

On 20 December 2022, the Auditor General tabled in Parliament the Compliance with Mining Environmental Conditions Report. The Report follows an assessment on whether the Department of Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety (DMIRS) and the Department of Water and Environmental Regulation (DWER) effectively ensured miners compliance with environmental conditions. The Report found that both DMIRS … Read more

New approach to fast-track green energy approvals

On 6 December 2022, the Western Australian State Government announced a new approach to fast-track green energy approvals, intended to ‘slash approval timeframes’ for green energy projects. Snapshot A new dedicated cross-government Green Energy Assessment Unit will be established by the Department of Water and Environmental Regulation. A Green Energy Panel comprising Government and industry … Read more

New guideline released for large-scale solar projects

The NSW Government has released a revised Large-Scale Solar Energy Guideline (Guideline), which provides updated direction on the planning framework and assessment of State significant development (SSD) solar developments, including how the Department of Planning and Environment (DPE) will assess impacts. Read more

Part V Environmental Regulation Reform in Western Australia: Submissions open

The Western Australian Department of Water and Environmental Regulation (DWER) have released further detail relating to the timing and content of the third stage of significant reforms to the Environmental Protection Act 1986 (WA) (EP Act), relating to Part V, Division 3. The recently released “Discussion paper: Environmental regulation reform” (Discussion Paper) available here sets … Read more

Reforming the Safeguard Mechanism

Government has announced that it will review the operation of the Safeguard Mechanism with a view to reducing greenhouse gas emissions from Australia’s highest emitting facilities. Comments on the discussion paper are due by 20 September 2022, with key issues in the discussion paper being calculation of baselines, the use of crediting mechanisms. Read more

Legislating ambition: Climate Change Bill 2022

The Federal Government has tabled its Climate Change Bill 2022 (the Bill) which – if passed – will enshrine into law the Government’s emissions reduction targets. A second bill, the Climate Change (Consequential Amendments) Bill 2022 (the Amendments Bill) would define these targets as objectives of a range of government agencies and programs. Read more

19 projects under the EPBC Act the subject of reconsideration requests

The Environment Council of Central Queensland has submitted reconsideration requests for 19 projects under section 78A of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (Cth) (EPBC Act). The projects are all coal and gas projects, principally but not exclusively in Queensland, that are currently undergoing assessment under the EPBC Act. Read more

NT prepares to introduce environmental chain of responsibility legislation

In June 2022, the Northern Territory Department of Environment, Parks and Water Security (DEPWS) released a consultation draft of the Environment Protection Legislation Amendment (Chain of Responsibility) Bill 2022 (NT) (Bill). The Bill has significant impacts on the liability of directors, associated entities, financiers, shareholders and others for environmental offences but only in relation to petroleum activities at this time. Read more