Environmental/Natural Resources Law Clinic

10 Units

This course will give students hands on experience in applying the key legislative instruments that affect Australia’s natural resources – water, native vegetation, minerals, threatened species and land ¿ using real cases. In so doing it will equip participants with a critical knowledge and practical understanding of land use regulation. Judicial review and civil enforcement practices will be learnt through practical exercises with reference to real and past cases. Students will gain hands on knowledge preparing them for practicing and policy-making in the environmental and natural resources law field, as well as an opportunity to reflect on these practices.

Faculty Faculty of Business and Law
School Newcastle Law School
Availability Semester 1 - 2017 (Newcastle City Precinct)
Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this course, students will be able to:

  1. Demonstrate an advanced working knowledge of the relevant NSW and Commonwealth environmental and natural resources laws;
  2. Demonstrate basic understanding of the practice and procedure most commonly involved in planning & environmental law practice;
  3. Demonstrate an appreciation of the role of, and tensions between, diverse stakeholders in planning and environmental matters, and the social role and importance of planning and environmental law to the community.

Topics in this course include:

  1. Overview of the NSW and Commonwealth natural resources management legislative regime.
  2. Practice and Procedure in the Land & Environment Court of NSW, including a visit to and observation of the Court .
  3. Brief introduction to judicial review.
  4. Development law: Part 4 of the Environmental Planning & Assessment Act 1979 (NSW); Local Environmental Plan Making; the role of Councils and the Planning Assessment Commission.
  5. Native Vegetation: The Native Vegetation Act 2003 (NSW)
  6. Water Management: The Water Management Act 2009 NSW), protection of Ramsar wetlands under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 2009 (Cth).
  7. Pollution: the Protection of the Environment Operations Act 1998 (NSW)
  8. Threatened species protection.
  • This course is only available to students enrolled in the Juris Doctor/ Graduate Diploma in Legal Practice or Master of Laws programs.
Assumed Knowledge LAWS6001, LAWS6002A, LAWS6002B, LAWS6003A, LAWS6003B, LAWS6004A, LAWS6004B, LAWS6005.
Assessment Items
  • Participation: Participation in Seminars
  • Presentation: Presentation of summary of research
  • Written Assignment: Research Assignment presented as a Letter of Advice

Contact Hours

Newcastle City Precinct


Face to Face On Campus 2 hour(s) per Week for Full Term
Plus attendance at the clinic and at court as required over the term. There will also be two optional site visits: one to the LEC in Sydney and one to a local mine site.

Timetable 2017 Course Timetables for LAWS6025
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