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Strong Environment Laws

With development pressure intensifying every year, we need strong environmental laws to protect the natural values and way of life that make the Territory such a special place.

Over the years, we’ve seen first-hand the way that weak environmental laws have paved the way for destructive development and shut the community out of important decisions. From the McArthur River to Port Melville, our landscapes are littered with the lasting legacy of an ‘anything goes’ approach to industrial development – an approach that is enabled by the Territory’s outdated and weak environmental laws.

ECNT has been at the forefront of the campaign for stronger environmental protection laws in the Territory. We have been working with environment groups and stakeholders, having regular meetings with decision makers and commenting in the media. The ECNT has facilitated hundreds of Territorians making submissions to the Northern Territory Government during public consultation over the recent regulatory reform process.

Recognising the need to reform and modernise the territory’s environmental management and protection framework in 2016 the Northern Territory Government commenced a comprehensive environmental regulatory reform program.

Despite industry lobbyists working hard to undermine these important reforms, the Environment Protection Bill 2019 was passed in September and is expected to commence in March/April next year. 

Repealing the Environment Assessment Act 1982 and the Environmental Assessment Administrative Procedures 1984, the Environment Protection Bill will create a new framework for environmental assessment and approval to deliver more transparent, accountable and independent environmental decision making. 

ECNT will continue to campaign to strengthen the regulations to manage the impacts of the mining industry and reforming the licensing and pollution framework.

See the ECNT media release here

Find out more on the Northern Territory Government Department of Environment and Natural Resources website