Environmental Law



Meet the Co-chairs - TAGLAW

Schiller, Baerbel E.
Spencer Fane LLP

Authors: Johanna Kennerley, Senior Associate & Timothy Bowles, Law Graduate

The Environment Protection Amendment Act 2018 (Vic) (EP Act), which has just been passed by the Victorian Parliament, will be the most significant change to Victorian environmental law since the adoption of the Environment Protection Act 1970 (Vic) nearly 50 years ago.

The EP Act increases regulatory compliance burdens for businesses, toughens the Environmental Protection Authority’s (EPA) ability to pursue offenders, and allows third parties to restrain breaches of the environmental protection regime.

The EP Act contemplates what is effectively an entirely new regime for environmental compliance. Businesses in Victoria must ensure that they are ready to comply with the new obligations.

Read the entire article.

Author: Johanna Kennerley, Senior Associate

On 15 February 2018, Queensland Government released the much anticipated Mineral and Energy Resources (Financial Provisioning) Bill 2018 (Bill). The Bill is substantially the same as the previous Mineral and Energy Resources (Financial Provisioning) Bill 2017 (2017 Bill), which lapsed due to the 2017 election. 

The Bill proposes the introduction of two key changes to Queensland’s mine rehabilitation and financial assurance regime:
  1. A revised financial assurance regime that seeks to minimise the financial risk to the State if mineral and energy resource tenure holders do not comply with their environmental management and rehabilitation obligations. The new regime proposes the creation of a pooled fund for financial assurance contributions, and a more flexible way to provide sureties; and
  2. New mine planning obligations that focus on progressive rehabilitation throughout the entire life cycle of a mine.
Our previous newsletters (which can be found here) provide detailed summaries of the policies leading to this Bill.  
The Bill has been referred to the Economic and Governance Committee, which is due to return its report to the House by 20 April 2018.
To read more click here, or visit www.carternewell.com

Developments in waste industry offer new opportunities to our country. Official data show that the number of licensed facilities has reached 1143 as of 2016, while it was 28 in 2003. Number of institutions authorized in accordance with the environment legislation is 12, including 4 that are for packing wastes. It is observed that a new and extended market is rapidly forming in the area of waste managing.

The basis of the legal regulation of control of packing wastes is Regulation of Control of Packing Wastes ("Regulation") that was published on the Official Gazette numbered 28035 on 24 August 2011. The regulation is based on the United Nations Directive on Packing Wastes ("Directive") dated 20 December 1994 numbered 94/62/EC, as a result of European Union membership process and endeavor of harmonization of our national legislation with the legal acquis of European Union.

Read more: Control of Packing Wastes in Turkey and the General Framework of Legislation

Authors: Johanna Kennerley, Senior Associate and Ben Hall, Special Counsel

The ‘polluter pays principle’ is the corner-stone of global environmental policy, and the basis of environmental laws throughout Australia. In Yarra City Council v Metropolitan Fire and Emergency Services Board, the ‘principle’ can be seen in action.

The Victorian Court of Appeal recently held that the Yarra City Council (Council) had to compensate the land owner for the cost of cleaning up pollution that occurred up to 100 years ago, in respect of land that had been transferred multiple times since the contamination occurred and which the Council had not owned since 1996.

This decision is important for all land owners and occupiers who participate in activities that could cause contamination across all Australian states and territories.

To read more click here, or visit www.carternewell.com

Author: Johanna Kennerley, Senior Associate


In January this year, the Labor Government released its response to the Independent Inquiry into the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and environmental regulation in Victoria. The government’s response accepted nearly all of the Inquiry’s recommendations, stating that changes would be implemented to modernise Victoria’s environmental law regime.  

Progress has been made this month, with the EPA releasing the Environmental Protection Bill 2017 (VIC) (Bill), which will give effect to the first commitments made by the government regarding the structure of the EPA, and the Environmental Protection (Scheduled Premises) Regulations 2017 (VIC) (SP Regulations) which is the first step towards a more streamlined licensing system.  

For more information about the Inquiry and the government’s response, please refer to our article ‘Will your business be ready for Victoria’s stronger environmental regime’. 

To read more click here, or visit www.carternewell.com