Moving from consideration to application: The uptake of principles of ecologically sustainable development in environmental decision-making in New South Wales

Guy J. Dwyer, Mark P. Taylor

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The achievement of ecologically sustainable development (ESD) is depen- dent upon appropriate action being taken at all scales of environmental governance to protect the environment. This article outlines a three-step process for achieving ESD at the project or activity scale in New South Wales. It considers the extent to which four environmental statutes in New South Wales adequately facilitate the application of ESD principles by decision-makers when they are deciding whether to approve a proposed project or activity (ie the first part of the three-step process). The article finds that two of the selected statutes do not adequately facilitate the first part of the three-step process because they vest a significant level of discretion in decision-makers with respect to determining if ESD principles are to be applied when making decisions about proposed projects or activities. Accordingly, it is argued that these statutes should be amended to provide for duties obliging decision-makers to apply ESD principles. It is also suggested that the discharge of these duties should be informed by non-binding policy guidelines for applying ESD principles in a given case.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)185-219
Number of pages35
JournalEnvironmental and Planning Law Journal
Volume30
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2013

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