Recent Question/Assignment

Assessment Item 3
General Information
This third and final assessment item provides you with an opportunity to think up an idea for environmental law reform in Australia. It will test your understanding of the potential role for the Commonwealth in environmental law and policy and link it some of the theoretical approaches we have studied in the unit.
Learning Outcomes Targeted
In general, students who complete this unit will be able to:
1. ULO1 Identify and critique the nature and sources of environment and planning law in Australia;
2. ULO2 Examine the regulatory frameworks within which environmental and planning legislation operates;
3. ULO3 Apply environmental and planning law to address complex problems; and
4. ULO4 Critically analyse current and emerging environmental theories and challenges and formulate potential legal reforms.
Specifically, this assessment item targets UL04.
Due Date
Wednesday 8 May 2024, 11.59pm.
All answers should be prepared in Microsoft Word.
50% of the final grade (50 marks total).
Law Reform Task
You have recently been employed as a policy officer in the Commonwealth Government’s Department of Environment. You are deployed to the environmental law reform team and have been tasked by your director to come up with a law reform proposal in 2,500 words or less (not including footnotes).
Your director says she would like to understand the background and context for your idea and what you are sugges ng in terms of improvements to Australian environmental law. You can either suggest new legisla on or amendments to exis ng law (or both).
Your director would like your idea to at least be ‘cons tu onally possible’ (e.g. be possible under the external affairs, trade and commerce or the corpora ons power) as well as grounded in some form of academic literature (i.e. not something ‘you have plucked from the sky’).
She has suggested you might like to draw on one or more conceptual approaches such as Earth jurisprudence, wild law, rights of nature, ecosystem restora on, caring for Country, human rights, environmental jus ce, ecological jus ce, or ghehds.
In your proposal, please include an execu ve summary (of about 300 words) and a conclusion (of about 200 words). Use no more than two levels of headings in your answer. In your answer, use footnotes adop ng the following styles:
Case Law
Minister for the Environment v Sharma (No 2) [2022] FCAFC 65.
Legisla on
Environment Protec on and Biodiversity Conserva on Act 1999 (Cth).
Journal Ar cle
Wu, Jing, I-Shin Chang, Olivia Bina, Kin-Che Lam, and He Xu. -Strategic environmental assessment implementa on in China—Five-year review and prospects.- Environmental Impact Assessment Review 31, no. 1 (2011): 77-84.
Sadler, Barry, Jiri Dusik, Thomas Fischer, Maria Par dario, Rob Verheem, and Ralf
Aschemann. Handbook of strategic environmental assessment (Routledge, 2012). Policy
Commonwealth of Australia, Environmental Offsets Policy, available at: h ps:// ons/epbc-act-environmentaloffsets-policy.
Subsequent references
Ibid (for immediately above)
Above n X (for notes not immediately above)

Criterion (50 marks total) Excellent Sa sfactory Unsa sfactory
Wri en Communica on and Referencing Answers should be clearly communicated using unambiguous language appropriate for the audience. Care should be taken when using headings and paragraphs and dot points. Spelling and grammar should be correct. Referencing should be consistent with the required style.
15 marks total Communica on is excellent and referencing is consistent throughout. There are no (or few) punctua on or gramma cal errors evident in the text of the answer. Headings and paragraphs are used appropriately, and the language
is appropriate for the audience.
10-15 marks There may be several spelling or other gramma cal errors, or the communica on may not be as clear as it could be. Headings may not be clear and word choice may not be appropriate. Referencing may not be
in accordance with the required style.
5-10 marks There are numerous spelling and/or gramma cal errors in the answer. The language is incoherent or contains discriminatory or other unacceptable remarks. The answer is over the word limit. Referencing may not be correct.
0-5 marks
Engagement with Theory
Students are expected to engage with theore cal/conceptual content in their approach to the ques on. This should be evidenced by reference to academic literature.
15 marks total There is clear evidence that the student has engaged with and understands the theore cal
basis for their proposal. This may be evidenced by ci ng relevant literature and clear
explana on of key concepts.
10-15 marks There is some a empt to engage with theory or higher-level concepts in the student’s work. However, the engagement may appear superficial or incomplete.
5-10 marks There is li le or no evidence of engagement with theory in the
student’s work.
0-5 marks
Quality of Proposal
Students are expected to prepare a proposal that is novel, achievable and addresses a real problem in the law. The quality of the proposal will be evidenced by effectively describing the problem and developing an argument for reform.
20 marks total The proposal appears to be cons tu onally sound and novel in its aims. It seeks to address a current or future issue in environmental law and the arguments put forward for change appear considered,
balanced and well ar culated.
15-20 marks The proposal may be cons tu onally risky or may have been a empted before in some form. The proposal may not address a major problem in environmental law in Australia and/or the arguments used to support change are not par cularly
well ar culated or believable.
10-14 marks The proposal addresses a non-existent
problem and/or would be cons tu onally invalid for the Commonwealth to achieve if reform was a empted. There is li le or no evidence of why the proposal is needed or how it is to occur, or the
arguments for change are very weak.
0-9 marks
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