Planning & Environment Update – 5 November 2021

Welcome to the next edition of the planning and environment bulletin.

If you have any queries or would like further information regarding anything you read in our bulletins, please contact:

Anthony Spence SC
M: 0400 545 503

Sarah Wilson
Special Counsel
M: 0428 102 712

Victoria Lightfoot
T: (03) 6235 5176


New Independent Environmental Regulator

The Tasmanian government has established the environmental regulator as a standalone independent State Authority. While it will still be known as the Environment Protection Authority (EPA), it will no longer sit within the Department of Primary Industries, Parks, Water, and Environment (DPIPWE).

Policy and government-led functions will remain with DPIPWE, while the EPA will retain the statutory assessment and regulations functions. This will include enforcement and compliance of environmental offences and regulation of certain activities covered by the Environmental Management and Pollution Control Act 1994 (EMPCA).

The Tasmanian government has announced that additional resources will be provided to the EPA as part of the reforms.

The new model is expected to commence 1 December 2021.

For operators, businesses and consultants, it is unlikely to impact your dealings with the regulator.


Net zero by 2050

On 26 October 2021, Prime Minister Scott Morrison and Minister for Industry, Energy and Emissions Reduction, Angus Taylor released Australia’s Long Term Emissions Reduction Plan (the Plan), to deliver net zero emissions by 2050. The Plan is based on Australia’s existing policies and will be guided by five principles.

The principles are:

  • technology not taxes;
  • expand choices not mandates;
  • drive down the cost of a range of new technologies;
  • keep energy prices down with affordable and reliable power; and,
  • be accountable for progress.

The Plan relies heavily on priority technologies to deliver 85 per cent of the emissions reductions necessary to achieve net zero by 2050. It also relies on future technology breakthroughs (technologies that do not currently exist / are to be discovered) to reduce emissions by a further 15 per cent by 2050. The Plan rules out taxes or a legislated mechanism.

Many companies and State and Local governments in Australia have set their own targets to reduce risk and address potential economic impacts from the global shift to emission reductions.

This presents both risks and opportunities and it would be prudent for organisations to consider how this will affect operations.

Click here to access a copy of the Plan.


Climate change negotiations – COP26

The Conference of the Parties of the UN Climate Change Convention meeting in Glasgow (COP 26) will run from 31 October to 12 November 2021. World leaders arrived in Scotland, alongside tens of thousands of negotiators, government representatives, businesses and citizens for the twelve days of talks.

One of the goals of COP 26 is for countries to commit to ambitious 2030 emissions reductions targets that align with reaching net zero by the middle of the century.

The outcome of this meeting may play an important role in what steps need to be taken by operators / businesses to reduce emissions.


Tasmanian Civil and Administration Tribunal now operating

The Resource Management and Planning Appeal Tribunal has been subsumed into the super tribunal, known as the Tasmanian Civil and Administration Tribunal (TasCAT).

TasCAT was formally established and commenced operating on 1 November 2021.

The Resource Management & Planning Appeal Tribunal website is not currently accessible. We expect that the new TasCAT website should be live shortly.

There will be a period of transition to this new streamlined model which may result in various changes to processes and procedures. We will keep you updated as to how this may affect you or your business.


Roll out of the Tasmanian Planning Scheme

Clarence LPS

The Clarence Local Provisions Schedule (LPS) has now come into effect. The Tasmanian Planning Scheme (TPS) now applies in the Clarence municipal area.

Central Coast LPS

The Central Coast LPS has now come into effect. The TPS now applies in the Central Coast municipal area.

Break O’Day Draft LPS

The Break O’Day draft LPS is currently on public exhibition until 13 December 2021. Representations can be made to Break O’Day Council during the exhibition period.

Click here to access the draft LPS and related documents.

Northern Midlands Draft LPS

The Northern Midlands draft LPS is currently on exhibition until 21 December 2021. Representations can be made to Northern Midlands Council during the exhibition period.

Click here to access the draft LPS and related documents.

Archived interim planning scheme documents

As each LPS is approved and the TPS takes effect for a particular municipal area, the final version of the relevant interim planning scheme will be published on the Tasmanian Planning Commission’s website as soon as practicable.

Click here to view achieved planning schemes.

Practice Note 15

The Tasmanian Planning Commission has released Practice Note 15 to provide information on the continuing consideration of draft amendments to planning schemes that are not determined before an LPS has effect.

Click here to access Practice Note 15.

Please contact us if you would like more information about how the roll-out of the TPS may impact you or your business.

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