Shaping environmental laws

Many environmental laws merely set out the framework for protecting the environment and heritage and rely on community involvement for proper protection. You can proactively seek to improve environmental laws through these processes.

  • To nominate a place that you think is of national heritage value and should be placed on the Commonwealth Heritage List, contact the Australian Environment Department. The nomination must set out how the place meets the Commonwealth Heritage criteria. For more information, you can request a Nomination Kit from the Australian Heritage Council.
  • To nominate a place that you wish to be declared as an Aboriginal place by the NSW Minister for the Environment, contact the NSW Office of Environment and Heritage. An Aboriginal place is a place which is or was of special significance for Aboriginal culture, and which is also recognised as 'significant' by the Minister for the Environment. For more information about Aboriginal cultural heritage, see our Fact Sheet on Aboriginal cultural heritage.
  • Apply to the Australian Government Environment Minister for protection for a specified area or object in Australia or Australian waters that is significant to Indigenous people. An Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander person or group, or someone on their behalf, can apply.
  • Join the NSW Boards and Committees register, which is a list of people interested in serving on NSW Government boards and committees, such as reserve trusts for the protection of certain areas of environmental and heritage significance.
  • Contact your local council to speak to them about joining a committee. Many councils have community advisory and consultative committees which may act as a liaison between the council and the community, or advise the council on matters such as the environment, heritage, and building and development.