We provide legal advice on environment and planning law to over 1,200 community groups and individuals from across NSW each year. Here's what our clients have to say about working with the EDO.
Community workshop in Soldiers Point
"I’d like to congratulate you on a wonderful presentation. Not only have a number of participants contacted me as a direct result of the EDO workshop but they have now joined other organisations where they feel they can "have their say". It's not so scary when someone like you gives people the confidence they need to speak out about issues which are important to them.
Thank you once again for taking the trouble to make the presentation easy to listen to and to understand. All in all, you were amazing and that was the comment most often expressed."
Jean, Soldiers Point Community Group Inc.
Bulga Milbrodale Progress Association – coal mine expansion in the Hunter Valley
“Determined to save our village from a coal mine expansion, the Association secured the services of the EDO NSW to prepare an appeal. This started a relationship which achieved a landmark case in the Land and Environment Court by overturning the approval.
“The residents of Bulga, with very limited experience and funding, were only able to achieve this success by the engagement of the EDO and the team of experts and advisors they assembled.”
John Krey, President
Calga Peats Ridge Community Group – quarry expansion , Central Coast
“Without the help of the EDO we would have been otherwise unable to afford access to this essential legal advice for the protection of the environment.
“In a democratic society we consider that that the EDO is an essential resource for community groups such as ours …..the work being done by the EDO is vital for the future of this country.”
Annette Wilby, Public Officer
Barrington, Gloucester, Stroud Preservation Alliance – coal seam gas project, upper Hunter Valley
“We have been the beneficiaries of EDO community information and education sessions on a number of occasions and were privileged to have the EDO act on our behalf regarding the Gloucester Coal Seam Gas Project. We were particularly impressed by the standard of advice received and the commitment of all staff members to our legal action and to the EDO’s objectives.”
Garry Smith, Project Officer
Catherine Hill Bay Progress Association – major residential development of historic village, south of Newcastle
“Small communities such as ours do not have the knowledge or necessary resources to buy in the expertise to achieve an even playing field with well-funded, well connected and powerful developers.
“EDO NSW has provided access to justice for our community and has held decision makers to account. If people are to have confidence in the decisions made by the NSW planning system then it is vital that a totally independent EDO NSW continues to be funded so that it can continue such extraordinary work.”
Suzanne Whyte, President
The Clarence Environment Centre, North Coast
“The Clarence Environment Centre has a ten year association with the Environmental Defenders Office and has found the advice and support of their dedicated staff, backed by regular newsletters and bulletins, to be invaluable.”
John Edwards, Honorary Secretary
Macarthur Bushwalkers – pollution of the George’s River by BHP Billiton’s Illawarra Coal, south-west of Sydney
“It would seem that without the EDO any small group wishing to defend its local environment would be doomed to failure because it is totally impossible for community groups like the Macarthur Bushwalkers to try and compete with the huge income and fighting ability of the multinationals.”
Kenneth Hall, President
Blue Mountains Conservation Society – pollution of the Cox’s River by Wallerawang power station, Central West
“The Society could not have run this case had it not been for the incredible support and assistance of the Environmental Defender’s Office. The support included both legal assistance and scientific expertise.”
Tara Cameron, Vice President
Friends of Turramurra – urban residential development, Sydney’s North Shore
“The EDO provided ongoing and timely advice on all aspects of the legal process….As a group with no experience in legal processes it was invaluable to have the EDO’s guidance…”
Alan Parr, President
Koala Preservation Society of Australia, Port Macquarie – protecting koala habitat from development, Mid-North Coast
“In 2008, the Koala Preservation Society engaged EDO NSW to assist us to preserve a vital core koala breeding area that the council was intending to remove for a sports reserve.
“If the EDO had not intervened we would have failed in being able to prevent the removal of this large area of important habitat.
“Thus we support, not only the work the Environmental Defenders’ Office does, we wholeheartedly support this important office to be funded for the many and varied legal matters they are required to do.”
Jervis Bay Regional Alliance, South Coast
“We wish to record our appreciation for the services provided by the EDO to our organisation and many others on the NSW south coast over many years.
“The relationship established between the EDO and community groups is one which strengthens the democratic process by facilitating grass-roots participation in the decision-making process at both government and private enterprise levels.”
Kristina Nilsson, President
Ryde Environment Group, Sydney’s north-west
“The EDO has responded quickly to our needs as a community environment group in every way it possibly could and we feel it is vital that it continue to be able to fulfil its charter to defend the environment.”
Noel Plumb, Convener
The Southern Cross Landholders Group – water management, Central West
“The SCLG is a small group of primary producers at Forbes in the central west of NSW. We had been engaged in a dispute with a mining company and local government in our area regarding the sustainability of an underground water resource in our locality.
“As Chairman of our group I have had regular contact with the EDO and on every occasion I have felt at the end of our conversations that we had achieved some positive results for our cause and the environment in which we live.
“This service allows the ordinary citizen of NSW to feel that they can obtain sound legal expertise on environmental issues without incurring large legal costs.”
Rawson Leach, Chairman