Environmental compliance news for business
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Environment law and policy tracker

Highlights include electricity market reform proposals, court decisions, and new grants. Jobs include posts with Glencore, Rio Tinto, John Holland and the Salvation Army.

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Upcoming events:

  • Webinar: National ozone, nitrogen dioxide and sulfur dioxide standards
    A July 16 one-hour webinar, hosted by EPA Victoria.

  • A just transition: Integrating social dimensions into climate change
    A July 17 breakfast seminar in Melbourne, with speakers including IGCC's Erwin Jackson.
  • Demonstrating and communicating environmental compliance to regulators
    A July 19 workshop in Melbourne, hosted by the Australian Environment Business Network.
  • Safeguard Mechanism webinar
    A two-hour July 23 webinar on amendments to the Safeguard Mechanism, hosted by the Clean Energy Regulator.
  • Energy futures: Whither Australian energy policy over the next three years?
    A July 23 evening seminar in Melbourne, hosted by the Grattan Institute.
  • Infrastructure sustainability WA conference
    A July 24 conference in Perth, hosted by the Infrastructure Sustainability Council of Australia.
  • Women of waste leadership breakfast
    A July 24 breakfast seminar in Brisbane, hosted by the Waste Management and Resource Recovery Association of Australia.
  • A climate journey with CSIRO – local government and community forums
    Forums on July 24 (Horsham) and July 25 (Ballarat) featuring CSIRO and Bureau of Meteorology experts. Live streaming of the July 24 event is available here.
  • We cannot be passive about ESG
    A July 29 lunchtime seminar, hosted by the CFA Institute.
  • Australian clean energy summit
    A July 30 and 31 event in Sydney, hosted by the Clean Energy Council.
  • The future of hydrogen: Australia and beyond
    An August 1 breakfast briefing in Sydney, with speakers including national hydrogen strategy taskforce leader Alison Reeve.
  • Contaminated land seminar
    An August 1 seminar in Sydney, hosted by the Australian Sustainable Business Group.
  • Carbon farming conference and expo
    An August 5 to 8 event in Albury, hosted by Carbon Farmers of Australia.
  • Webinar: Electricity generation – changing for the future
    An August 6 two-hour webinar, hosted by EPA Victoria.
  • Power blackouts and climate justice: What are the solutions?
    An evening seminar in Sydney, hosted by the Australian Centre for Climate and Environmental Law.
  • Hydrogen forum – a pathway to environmental and regional prosperity
    An August 8 conference in the Latrobe Valley.
  • NGER reporting webinars
    An August 14 to September 9 series of webinars on NGER and the Emissions and Energy Reporting System, hosted by the Clean Energy Regulator.
  • Asbestos: Stocks, management and disposal issues
    An August 20 seminar in Sydney, hosted by the Australian Sustainable Business Group.
  • War on e-waste – with Craig Reucassel
    An August 21 evening presentation in Melbourne by Craig Reucassel.
  • Waste-to-energy conference
    An August 26 to 28 conference in Canberra, hosted by the Waste Management and Resource Recovery Association.

    National biodiversity offsets conference
    An August 26 to 28 conference in Canberra, hosted by EIANZ.

    Green steel: Forging a new industry in Australia
    An August 27 evening seminar in Canberra, featuring ANU's Dr John Pye.

  • Pollution incident response management plans seminar
    An August 29 seminar in Sydney, hosted by the Australian Sustainable Business Group.
  • Wastewater systems design and management
    A September 5 seminar in Sydney, hosted by the Australian Sustainable Business Group.
  • WA threatened species forum 2019
    A September 5 and 6 forum in Geraldton, hosted by the Northern Agricultural Catchments Council.
  • New environmental laws, obligations and funding
    A September 6 seminar covering national developments, hosted by the Australian Environment Business Network.
  • International clean-up conference
    A September 8 to 12 conference in Adelaide, on all aspects of site contamination and remediation, including the latest on PFAS.

National:

  • The Australian Energy Market Operator has released an insights paper on building power system resilience with pumped hydro storage.

  • Have your say!: Comments are due by August 2 on an Australian Energy Market Commission (AEMC) directions paper on reforms to better coordinate generation and transmission investment.
  • The AEMC has also published a draft report recommending the introduction of a 'regulatory sandbox' toolkit to make it easier for businesses to develop and trial innovative energy technologies and business models.
  • The federal and WA governments have instructed Woodside to include detailed information on greenhouse gas emissions and mitigation measures in the environmental impact statement (EIS) for its Browse to North West Shelf project (see background here).
  • New resource: Business Renewables Centre Australia has released a primer on power purchase agreements.
  • The Australian Bureau of Statistics today released data on energy use and electricity generation in 2017-18.
  • Snowy Hydro Ltd has made an EPBC referral for the proposed segment factory that would manufacture tunnel segments for Snowy 2.0.
  • Court decision: Woolworths clearly failed to follow its own policy for vetting environmental claims, but wasn't deceptive when it marketed picnicware as compostable, the Federal Court has held (see background here).
  • A new Woodside report, released for comment by NOPSEMA, shows the company's Scarborough LNG project could increase Australia's annual greenhouse gas emissions by up to 2.5 million tonnes (see background here).
  • NOPSEMA, the agency that regulates the offshore oil and gas industry, on Friday released Woodside's project proposal for the Scarborough project.
  • Have your say!: Comment closes July 28 on a suite of papers on hydrogen, released by a COAG Energy Council working group (see background here).
  • Have your say!: Submissions close August 7 on the impact statement and draft variation to the Ambient Air Quality National Environment Protection Measure (see background here).

Queensland:

  • Statutory development: The state government has gazetted the State Penalties Enforcement (Waste) Amendment Regulation 2019.

  • The state government has released a discussion paper on waste to energy (see background here).
  • Townsville City Council has become Australia's first local government accredited to test for PFAS contamination by the National Association of Testing Authorities (see background here).
  • Have your say!: The state government has released draft EIS terms of reference for the CopperString project, a 1,100km transmission line that would connect the North West Minerals Province and Mount Isa to the National Electricity Market grid south of Townsville. Comments are due by August 2.
  • Have your say - last chance!: The state government is consulting on new levy arrangements to support the expanded role of the Office of Groundwater Impact Assessment, which now includes mining, as well as gas. Submissions close on July 15.

NSW:

  • Biodiversity tender – last chance!: The Biodiversity Conservation Trust has opened a state-wide tender to buy biodiversity credits in various credit classes. Tenders must be submitted by July 19.

  • Grant opportunity: The Office of Environment and Heritage is offering grants of up to $60,000 to Aboriginal community groups and organisations, in the latest funding round under the Protecting our places program. Applications close on August 26.
  • The EPA has issued a prevention notice to Nationwide Oil over odours from its Wetherill Park waste oil processing plant.
  • Court ruling: Chief Judge Brian Preston of the Land and Environment Court has fined a construction company $95,000 for unlawfully removing trees on a project in suburban Sydney.
  • EnergyAustralia will carry out an $80 million turbine upgrade at its Mt Piper power station near Lithgow to expand the plant's capacity by 60MW, without increasing coal throughput.
  • Have your say!: The EPA is seeking comments by July 29 on a revised guideline on preparing pollution incident response management plans.
  • Have your say – last chance!: The Office of Environment and Heritage is inviting comment by July 19 on a proposed update of the National Parks and Wildlife Regulation 2009.
  • Have your say – last chance!: The Office of Environment and Heritage is seeking comment on water management in the Hunter River to support native fish migration. Comment closes on July 21.
  • Grant opportunity: Applications must be submitted by September 2 for a share of $1.16 million in climate resilience grants available to the state's local governments (see background here).

ACT:

  • Comments on a discussion paper on single-use plastics are due by the end of July (see background here).

Victoria:

  • The EPA has again ordered SKM to stop accepting material at one of its Melbourne recycling facilities, alleging it had failed to comply with the state's waste management policy (see background here).

  • The EPA has issued new guidelines on storing and handling solid materials.
  • Court ruling: A mining company has been fined $20,000 and will spend several hundred thousand dollars on a clean-up, after illegally accepting industrial waste (see background here).
  • Recovered Energy Australia explains its Laverton North waste to energy proposal in newly-released transcript of its evidence to state Parliament's waste and recycling inquiry.
  • Comment closes August 2 on a state government issues paper on the circular economy (see background here).
  • Have your say!: Comment closes August 15 on a new draft marine and coastal policy (see background here).
  • Have your say – last chance!: Comment closes July 22 on the Combet report, which recommends that Victoria aim for up to a 60% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2030 (see background here).

Tasmania:

  • Have your say!: Comments are due by October 7 on a draft waste plan that proposes introducing a waste levy (see background here).

  • Have your say!: Submissions are due by September 21 to a review of the Aboriginal Heritage Act.

South Australia:

  • The Environment Resources and Development Court has ordered Caltex to pay a council $390,292 in damages, after contamination spread from a service station onto council-owned land (see background here).

  • The state government last weekend unveiled its new strategy on single-use plastics, involving legislated bans on some items (see background here).
  • Grant opportunity: Applications close August 2 for round one grants under the Greener Neighbourhoods program, with a total of $1 million available to Adelaide councils to increase tree canopy and green cover.

Western Australia:

  • Have your say!: Comment closes September 2 on an EPA background paper on greenhouse gas guidance (see background here).

  • Have your say!: The Department of Water and Environment Regulation is inviting comments by August 16 on its proposed compliance and enforcement policy.
  • Have your say!: The Department of Water and Environmental Regulation is seeking comments by July 24 on proposed changes to waste regulations that would require the use of weighbridges at levy-liable landfills.

Northern Territory:

  • Have your say!: The EPA has invited comment by July 19 on draft terms of reference for an EIS for PNX Metals' Hayes Creek project.

  • Have your say!: The EPA has invited comment by July 19 on draft guidance for the preparation of environmental impact statements (see background here).
  • Grant opportunity: Applications close September 2 for a share in the Territory government's FY20 environment grants round, which will disburse about $930,000.

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