Fed Minister confirms takayna tracks need approval

2015-10-13 14.03.42The Federal Minister (by delegate) has determined that proposed works to re-open off-road vehicle tracks in the Western Tasmania Aboriginal Cultural Landscape is a controlled action and will require assessment and approval under the EPBC Act before the project can proceed. In long-running Federal court proceedings, the Tasmanian Aboriginal Centre argued that the project was a controlled action.

The Minister will now prepare assessment guidelines, and the State government will need to prepare a Public Environment Report addressing the impact of the project on indigenous heritage values and threatened species.

Once the Public Environment Report is prepared, it will be released for public comment.

To read the Tasmanian Aboriginal Centre’s submission regarding the proposal, click here.

EDO Tas Bulletin 16/2017

last-light-tarkine-tasmania-by-arwen-dyerRead about the takayna tracks decision, the return of Kings Run, Macquarie Harbour results and a record penalty for an oil spill in the latest EDO Tas Bulletin.


EDO Tas AGM 2017

What is public interest litigation, and how can it protect the environment?

The EDO Tasmania Management Committee warmly invites all members and supporters to attend our Annual General Meeting for 2017, including a presentation from former EDO Tasmania president, Roland Browne, about the value of public interest environmental litigation.

Happy Devil - Balloons_211015-1WHEN:     23 October 2017, 6.00pm
WHERE:   New Sydney Hotel (Upstairs), Bathurst Street, Hobart

Catch up with other members, hear more about what we’ve been up to this year, and find out what’s in store for the next 12 months.

Any members wishing to nominate for Committee positions should return a completed Nomination form to edotas@edotas.org.au by 20 October 2017.

To download the meeting papers, click here.

The official AGM will be followed by casual drinks and dinner.

Not a member? Join or renew by clicking here.

takayna tracks referral

Midden near Johnsons Head 2015-10-13 14.03.42 Aboriginal midden, Tarkine coast, NW Tasmania. tracks proposal

The Tasmanian Government referred its proposal to upgrade and re-open off-road vehicle tracks in the Western Tasmania Aboriginal Cultural Landscape to the Commonwealth Minister.  The Minister is now required to determine whether the proposal is likely to have a significant impact on the indigenous heritage and natural values of the area.

On behalf of the Tasmanian Aboriginal Centre, we made a strong submission asking the Minister to determine that the proposal would have significant, irreparable impacts and was “clearly unacceptable”.

To read the submission, click here.

For background, click here.

(Images:  Grant Dixon and Tiphanie Acreman)

Summer internships with EDO Tas – applications open!

2017-2018 summer internships are being held during the following periods:

4 – 15 December 2017   8 – 19 January 2018  29 Jan – 9 February 2018

Internships provide students and recent graduates with opportunities to:

    The Devil Lawyer_300114-1 copy
  • Develop an understanding of the Resource Management and Planning System;
  • Gain practical research and drafting experience in relation to planning and environmental law issues;
  • Provide paralegal support in environmental court cases;
  • Contribute to policy and law reform projects in areas such as marine farming, environmental assessment, forest management and planning;
  • Assist in the preparation of environmental law resources;
  • Get an insight into working at a community legal centre;
  • Establish network contacts with planning and environmental law practitioners.

The internship programme will be of most benefit to students with a genuine interest in resource management issues, social justice and environmental law.  Students with a planning / geography background are also encouraged to apply.

Preference will be given to students in the final years of their degree, or recent graduates.

Click here for the 2017  Internship application package.  Applications are due by 23 October 2017.

Do you have a ‘right to know’?


The Right to Information Act 2009 was designed to improve the transparency of government decision-making by giving citizens, journalists, politicians and NGOs timely access to the information supporting government decisions.

This Right to Know week, join Community Legal Centres Tasmania for a free event discussing how the Right to Information Act 2009 operates in practice, and whether it is achieving its aims.

Associate Professor Rick Snell will present a “frank and fearless assessment of Tasmania’s RTI framework”, followed by a panel discussion featuring:

  • Richard Connock, Tasmanian Ombudsman
  • Cassy O’Connor, Leader of the Tasmanian Greens
  • Madeleine Ogilvie, Labor Shadow Minister for Open Government & Information Integrity
  • David Killick, Political Reporter, The Mercury
  • Dale Webster, Executive Director for Consumer, Building and Occupational Services, Department of Justice

When:            Monday, 25 September 2017, 12:30pm – 2:00pm
Where:           Churchill Room, Salamanca Inn

To RSVP, go to https://right2knowtas.eventbrite.com.au

New website for planning reform information

The Tasmanian Government has laTasmania-logounched a new website with information about various aspects of the Planning Reform agenda.  The website includes information about the State Planning Provisions, Local Provisions Schedules, proposed State Planning Policies and proposed changes to legislation.


EDO Bulletin 15/2017

Source: DPIPWE referral 2017/8038

Read about the referral of the Government’s 4WD tracks project to the Federal Minister, a Federal Court challenge to the Okehampton salmon farm, the recertification of Tassal’s Macquarie Harbour leases by ASC, a proposal for higher penalties for threatened species offences, and a Gov’t MPs petition against seal dumping (and more!) in the latest edition of the EDO Tas Bulletin.


Arthur-Pieman Conservation Area 4WD tracks project

Ordinance Point_Whish-Wilson - Tarkine 4WD -7008_The Commonwealth Minister for the Environment and Energy has invited public submissions in relation to the Tasmanian Government’s proposal to re-open a number of off-road vehicle tracks in the Arthur-Pieman Conservation Area, on Tasmania’s west coast.

The approximate 37km of tracks traverse the Western Tasmania Aboriginal Cultural Landscape (WTACL), which is on the National Heritage list due to the outstanding significance of the Aboriginal cultural heritage found there.

The Tasmanian Government’s referral of the project to the Commonwealth Minister comes after a number of years of litigation by our client, the Tasmanian Aboriginal Centre. The objective of the litigation was to protect the values of the WTACL from significant impacts from off-road vehicles and ensure the tracks were not reopened without the necessary approvals under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999.

The first round of consultation relates to whether or not the proposed works are a “controlled action” – that is, whether the activity is likely to have a significant impact on the National Heritage values of the WTACL and therefore must be assessed by the Commonwealth Minister – and, if so, what level of assessment the proposal should be subject to.  If the Minister decides that the proposal IS a controlled action, there will be a further opportunity for public comment on whether the proposal should be approved.

Public comments on whether the proposal is a controlled action will be accepted until Tuesday, 26 September 2017. Read more have your say (search for referral 2017/8038).

To read more about the background to the TAC’s court cases, click here.