Australia’s enhanced decommissioning framework released

On 14 December 2020, the Department of Industry, Science, Energy and Resources released the consultation paper, "Enhancing Australia's Decommissioning Framework". The paper is the third step in a reform process and follows a Discussion Paper published in October 2018, a process of consultation and stakeholder formal submissions into early 2019. Implementation of the framework is expected to occur in 2021. We have outlined the key components of the proposed Enhanced Framework. Read more

Trends in climate litigation – continued focus on disclosure, portfolio analysis, and role of individual activities in broader climate impacts

The settlement this week of Mr McVeigh’s proceeding against REST has underlined management of climate risk and TCFD-aligned disclosure as growing issues for institutional investors. Other recent developments include a further post-approval challenge to a coal mine, asserting that new expert evidence regarding climate change impacts on the Great Barrier Reef should be taken into account to revoke the approval decision and prosecution for import of synthetic greenhouse gas where a single offence attracted an agreed penalty of $500,000. Read more

Young Australians bring climate claims against the Australian government

A group of Australian teenagers has filed a class action against the Commonwealth Minister for the Environment, and is seeking an injunction to prevent the Minister approving a proposed coal mine expansion. The claim alleges that approving the mine would breach the Minister’s common law duty of care to young people. The case follows the recent landmark proceedings alleging that the Commonwealth and others failed to properly disclose information about climate change risks to prospective investors in government bonds. We provide a snapshot of the issues and implications of these proceedings. Read more

National Remediation Framework released

The Cooperative Research Centre of Contamination Assessment and Remediation of the Environment, in consultation with the National Remediation Framework Steering Group, has released the National Remediation Framework. The Framework is intended for use by land owners and managers, government agencies and site contamination practitioners as a reference point for best practice methods and approaches to remediation. Read more

Back from the tip(ping) point – Victoria’s 10-year circular economy strategy

The Victorian Government’s recent circular economy strategy outlines a bold plan to transform Victoria’s relationship with waste and recycling. The Recycling Victoria strategy represents a fundamental change of mindset and will require changed behaviours from industry and consumers. Businesses operating in this space should be aware of the investment opportunities presented by the changing waste landscape. Read more