Review of Australia’s Primary Environmental Protection Law

Review of Australia’s Primary Environmental Protection Law

Fishing line entanglement on a young Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphin in Moreton Bay.

Dolphin Research Australia recently submitted our feedback to the 10-year review of the Environmental
Biodiversity and Conservation Act 1990 (EPBC Act). This Act is the primary legislation that governs the environmental and wildlife protection in Australia.

The key components of our submission urged that;
– The Act should be strengthened to provide for adequate environmental protections and the preservation of functioning ecosystems. There are many cases where the Act has failed to protect vulnerable species and critical habitats.
– The Act addresses climate change in the objectives and any proposal processes. Integration of international agreements concerning climate change should also be considered.
– Strengthening of the current Bioregional Plans, from descriptive documents, into legislative plans that provide actionable trigger points and thresholds. These should be the culmination of the available scientific knowledge and should follow best-practice adaptive management frameworks.
– Approval processes for developments and activities that concern our natural environment and wildlife should be more transparent, apply best practice assessments, to have an independent expert review process.
– Increase stakeholder consultation during the assessment process.

We will be watching closely for updates regarding the review and amendments to this legislation.

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