Environmental compliance news for business

Environment law and policy tracker

Highlights include a NSW statement on native vegetation investigations and court cases in two states. Jobs include posts with EPA Victoria, Downer, AGL, CS Energy and Mott MacDonald.

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Upcoming events:

  • 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.
  • Green finance forum and report launch
    An August 26 morning seminar) in Sydney, hosted by the Climate Bonds Initiative.
  • 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 finance report launch and forum
    An August 27 (Sydney) and August 29 (Melbourne) launch of reports on green infrastructure investment opportunities, prepared by the Climate Bonds Initiative with local finance sector sponsors.
  • Green steel: Forging a new industry in Australia
    An August 27 evening seminar in Canberra, featuring ANU's Dr John Pye.
  • Negative emission bio-based circular economy
    An August 28 evening seminar in Perth by Professor Chun Zhu Li, founding director of the Fuels and Energy Technology Institute at Curtin University.
  • 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.
  • Environment professionals management workshop
    A September 12 and 13 conference in Sydney, hosted by the Australian Sustainable Business Group.
  • Australian hydrogen forum
    A September 18 to 20 conference in Sydney.
  • Healthy hospitals forum 2019: Integrating quality, OHS and environmental sustainability
    A September 23 and 24 conference in Melbourne.


  • Have your say!: The House of Representatives Standing Committee on Environment and Energy is inviting submissions by September 16 to its inquiry into nuclear energy in Australia.

  • Have your say!: The Climate Change Authority is accepting submissions until August 23 to its update of advice on meeting Australia's Paris Agreement commitments.
  • The Morrison government has announced a Productivity Commission review to speed approvals of mining projects (see background here).
  • The Australian Energy Regulator has launched proceedings against four wind farm operators over South Australia's September 2016 blackout (see background here).
  • The Clean Energy Regulator has contracted to buy hardly any abatement after considering bids in the latest ERF auction (see background here).
  • The rebadging of the Emissions Reduction Fund will do more than just deliver a name change, according to Clean Energy Regulator chair David Parker (see background here).
  • New resource: NZ-based Meridian Energy has released a climate disclosure report that aligns with TCFD recommendations.
  • The ACCC has launched its second appeal over environmental claims in a week, this time over Woolworths' claims about a range of disposable picnicware. (see background here).
  • A court has sentenced a plumber to four and a half years in jail after he falsely claimed to have installed more than 400 solar heat pumps (see background here).
  • Grant opportunity: The Communities Environment Program, which provides each electorate with up to $150,000 for small, community-led environment projects, will accept applications until October 10.
  • The comment period closed yesterday on the impact statement and draft variation to the Ambient Air Quality National Environment Protection Measure (see background here).


  • Have your say – last chance!: Comment closes August 26 on a state government waste to energy discussion paper (see background here).


  • The Department of Planning, Industry and Environment has released a policy for resolving investigations under the now repealed Native Vegetation Act 2003.

  • The state government has launched the process of updating and renewing the contract to supply waste and resource recovery services to its agencies.
  • An important appeal court ruling on asbestos and waste has overturned a lower court decision that narrowly defined the duties of generators, recyclers and users of waste-derived materials (see background here).
  • Glencore and Peabody could be ordered to only export coal from their jointly-owned mine to Paris Agreement signatories under an Independent Planning Commission proposal (see background here).
  • The EPA has issued a prevention notice to Jalco Australia Pty Ltd, a division of Pact Group, over odour emissions.
  • The EPA has released a guide to the regulation of motorway ventilation stacks.
  • Have your say!: Submissions are due by September 15 to an inquiry by the Legislative Assembly Environment and Planning Committee's into the sustainability of energy supply and resources in NSW.
  • Grant opportunity: The Office of Environment and Heritage is offering grants of $1 million to $5 million (private sector and not-for-profit) and up to $10 million (councils) for waste management infrastructure. Applications close August 27.
  • 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.
  • 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).


  • Court ruling: A court has fined Incitec Pivot $120,000 after acidic, cadmium-contaminated sludge flowed into a bay through disused pipes (see background here).

  • The Supreme Court has ordered that recycler SKM Corporate Pty Ltd be wound up (see background here).
  • Have your say – last chance!: A parliamentary inquiry into tackling climate change in Victorian communities is accepting submissions until August 26.
  • The EPA has released a works approval application for a gasification plant in the Melbourne suburb of Laverton capable of processing 200,000 tonnes of municipal waste annually (see background here).
  • For the first time, railway sleepers made from recycled plastic have been installed on the state's regional train network. The sleepers were installed last month near Wyndham Vale train station, in a regional trains storage yard.
  • Comment has now closed on a state government issues paper on the circular economy (see background here).
  • Have your say - last chance!: Comment closes August 15 on a new draft marine and coastal policy (see background here).


  • Have your say!: Comments are due by October 7 on a draft waste plan that proposes the introduction of 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 Urban Renewal Authority is inviting tenders to supply smart lighting poles that integrate lighting with WiFi, security services and environmental sensors.

Western Australia:

  • Two of the four generating units at the coal-fired Muja power station in Collie will be closed in October 2022.

  • The state government is planning an industry-funded buyout of homes in Port Hedland's West End, to resolve longstanding complaints about dust from port operations (see background here).
  • Have your say!: Comment closes September 2 on an EPA background paper on greenhouse gas guidance (see background here).
  • Have your say – last chance!: The Department of Water and Environment Regulation is inviting comments by August 16 on the proposed Compliance and Enforcement Policy.

Northern Territory:

  • Grant opportunity: Applications close September 2 for a share in the Territory government's FY20 environment grants round, which will disburse about $930,000.

Jobs and appointments:

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