EDO NSW Blog posts

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The 2016 NSW biodiversity reforms: 6 things you need to know

By EDO NSW Policy and Law Reform Director Rachel Walmsley

9 June 2016

You may have heard that the NSW Government has proposed a legislative and policy package that removes many of NSW’s long-held environmental protections. If you are having trouble navigating the many reform documents, EDO NSW has identified six key issues you should know about.

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Housing, housing everywhere but not a DA in sight: the possible consequences of expanding complying development on sensitive coastal environments

By EDO NSW Policy and Law Reform Solicitor Dr Emma Carmody

26 May 2016

Sometimes seemingly separate government reforms can interact in unforeseen ways. Two recent reforms proposed by the NSW Government are a case in point: the expansion of the General Housing Code and the coastal reform package. We need to make sure these reforms work together more effectively so as to minimise impacts on coastal wetlands and littoral (or coastal) rainforests.

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Warkworth coal mine expansion legal challenge withrawn

By EDO NSW CEO/Principal Solicitor Sue Higginson

25 May 2016

Our client the Bulga Milbrodale Progress Association has withdrawn its appeal against Rio Tinto’s Warkworth coal mine expansion. The expansion was approved by the NSW Planning Assessment Commission (PAC) in late 2015, and is very similar to the project that was refused by the Land and Environment Court in 2013. That refusal was upheld by the NSW Court of Appeal in 2014.

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Our top 10 concerns with the draft Biodiversity Conservation Bill 2016 and Local Land Services Amendment Bill

By EDO NSW Policy and Law Reform Director Rachel Walmsley

13 May 2016

The NSW Government’s proposed biodiversity legislative and policy package removes many of NSW’s long-held environmental protections, and represents a serious backward step for environmental law and policy in New South Wales. Here are EDO NSW's top 10 concerns with the draft Biodiversity Conservation Bill 2016 and Local Land Services Amendment Bill.

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Celebrating our amazing volunteers during International Volunteer Week

Our volunteers are the unsung heroes of our work. We rely greatly on their commitment.

10 May 2016

For International Volunteer Week 2016, we’d like to introduce you to three talented, dedicated and passionate young people who have volunteered their time and skills to help protect the environment. They are just three of the thousands of volunteers who have given their time to help us defend the environment and advance the law over our 31 year history.

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A serious backwards step for biodiversity laws

By EDO NSW Policy and Law Reform Director Rachel Walmsley

3 May 2016

The NSW Government’s proposed biodiversity legislative and policy package removes many of NSW’s long-held environmental protections, and represents a serious backward step for environmental law and policy in New South Wales.

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The ‘water trigger’ – an important first step, but there’s room for improvement

By Policy and Law Reform Solicitor Dr Emma Carmody

2 February 2016

The ‘water trigger’ has been a good addition to environmental laws in Australia. But there are ways it can be improved. EDOs of Australia has just made some recommendations regarding the scope and operation of this important regulatory mechanism.

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Defending the Pilliga in Court

By EDO NSW CEO/Principal Solicitor Sue Higginson

21 January 2016

You may have heard that our client People for the Plains, a community group from the Pilliga, is taking CSG company Santos to court over its Leewood CSG waste water development near the iconic Pilliga woodlands. The group argues that without a proper environmental assessment and public consultation, the development is illegal.

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$1m fine for whaling company: Why is it so significant?

By EDO NSW Solicitor Stacey Ella

18 January 2016

In November 2015 the Federal Court of Australia fined a Japanese whaling company $1 million for breaching an order requiring it to stop whaling in the Australian Whale Sanctuary. Despite this landmark win, the company announced in December that its ships were headed to the Southern Ocean to start the 2015/2016 summer whaling season under Japan’s controversial new ‘scientific’ whaling program. It’s likely the company will kill whales in the Sanctuary.

What is the significance of this case? How can the whaling continue despite the Court’s decision? And what effect does this decision have?

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Petroleum exploration documents released for public scrutiny

By EDO NSW CEO/Principal Solicitor Sue Higginson

13 January 2016

In a win for transparency, the National Offshore Petroleum Safety and Environmental Management Authority (NOPSEMA) has been ordered to release key documents about seismic exploration activities in whale feeding grounds near Kangaroo Island, South Australia.

This win is a stark reminder for all agencies and regulators making decisions about public interest environmental issues that transparency and accountability in decision-making is vital to the proper administration of environmental laws.

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