The Rocky Hill decision: a watershed for climate change action?

Lesley Hughes*

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalComment/opinionpeer-review

    11 Citations (Scopus)


    A ruling by the New South Wales Land and Environment Court to refuse consent to a proposed coal mine has been hailed as a landmark in the fight to limit dangerous climate change. The judgment rested heavily on scientific expert testimony, especially with regard to the carbon budget concept, taking both direct and indirect (or downstream) emissions into account with regard to their impact on both the local environment and global climate change. While the case does not set a formal legal precedent, the central arguments used are likely to have broad applicability to other cases, and represent a significant milestone in the growing field of climate change litigation.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)341-351
    Number of pages11
    JournalJournal of Energy and Natural Resources Law
    Issue number3
    Early online date20 May 2019
    Publication statusPublished - 2019


    • climate change
    • coal mining
    • development consent
    • greenhouse gas emissions
    • Scope 3 emissions


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