Large retailers may be given the green light to collectively purchase electricity

You may or may not have seen in the media that on 20 September 2019 the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) released a draft determination and interim authorisation giving members of the Large Format Retail Association (LFRA) a green light to begin the initial steps to collectively negotiate to purchase electricity. Members of the […]

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Doing Business in Australia

The Australian Government welcomes foreign investment. With well-developed infrastructure, a stable political environment, robust economy and easy access to Asia Pacific, Australia is an ideal investment location for foreign companies looking to grow internationally. There are important considerations for foreign investors to make when deciding on how to enter the Australian market. Whether it’s the […]

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Call for comment on proposed new standards for apartment exteriors

The Victorian government is proposing further changes to the requirements for apartment developments, with the release of the Better Apartments in Neighbourhoods – Discussion Paper 2019 (the BANs Discussion Paper) which proposes changes to the planning controls that regulate apartment developments in Victoria. Following on from the Better Apartment Design Standards (BADS) which were introduced […]

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Ravenhall Landfill decision confirms the scope of VCAT’s powers to review EPA approvals

In June this year, VCAT made the decision to approve a Works Approval to allow for the expansion of the Ravenhall Landfill, the largest landfill in Victoria in the decision of Melton CC v Landfill Operations Pty Ltd (Red Dot) [2019] VCAT 882. Originally approved by the EPA in 2016, the Works Approval was appealed […]

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Businesses pay high price for environmental non-compliance

In Queensland, businesses that fail to comply with environmental obligations under the Environmental Protection Act 1994 (EP Act) risk enforcement and prosecution action by the Department of Environment and Science (Department), including the imposition of significant fines and recording of convictions, as illustrated by the following cases.   Waste Transfer Business A company operating a waste transfer […]

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Landowner wins appeal against Council enforcement notice

The Planning and Environment Court in Benfer v Sunshine Coast Regional Council[2019] QPEC 6 has held that an enforcement notice given to a landowner in relation to an alleged development offence should be set aside due to deficiencies in the content of the notice, including a lack of detail as to the nature and timing of […]

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Development refused due to inconsistency with Centres Strategy

The Planning and Environment Court in Hotel Property Investments Ltd v Council of the City of Gold Coast [2019] QPEC 5, refused a change application (other) lodged in accordance with sections 78 and 82 of the Planning Act 2016 (Planning Act) for an existing approval from showrooms and a café to offices on a site located in […]

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Significant climate change decision – shifting grounds for the Australian coal sector?

Until a month ago, no coal mine project in Australia had been refused by a decision-maker or Court on the basis of its contribution to global greenhouse gas emissions and climate change. On 8 February 2019 this changed with the significant and controversial judgment of Brian Preston CJ[1] in the NSW Land and Environment Court in the […]

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VCAT refuses proposal for a residential tower in South Yarra

VCAT has overturned the decision of the Stonnington City Council and refused an application for a twenty-two storey mixed use development in South Yarra, which would have exceeded the preferred maximum building height for the subject site by 30m. The Tribunal’s decision in C&L International Holdings Pty Ltd v Stonnington CC [2019] VCAT 69 demonstrates […]

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Enforcement authorities can take pre-emptive action to avoid non-compliance

Planning and environmental laws establish a wide range of offences and powers to deter and penalise non-compliance, and enforcement action is often directed at remedying or prosecuting breaches. Enforcement authorities however also often have a range of powers to take pre-emptive action to avoid non-compliance and stop breaches before they occur.  A recent example of […]

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Court approves dwellings despite non-compliance

The Planning and Environment Court in The Planning Place Pty Ltd v Brisbane City Council [2018] QPEC 62, recently approved a proposed redevelopment of a corner block located in Windsor for two dwelling houses proposed to be three storeys in height above a basement carpark, each to be located on its own allotment. In this case, the […]

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Council wins costs against company and director

In Gold Coast City Council v Adrian’s Metal Management Pty Ltd & Ors (No.2), the Planning and Environment Court has awarded costs on the standard basis against the company and its director in enforcement proceedings taken by the Council to stop the unlawful operation of a scrap metal yard.Enforcement Proceedings The company operated a scrap metal […]

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