Review EPA decisions

If you have concerns about the outcome of an EPA decision or you have new information you think the EPA should consider, please contact the EPA as soon as possible.

In some circumstances you have right to seek an internal review of a decision including the review of penalty notice made to you, the environmental risk level on your licence or a decision about your request for public access to information. You can also request a review if you believe the EPA may have breached your privacy, or not complied with a request for access or amendment to your personal or health information.

Internal review

If you are not satisfied with the outcome of an EPA decision, you can seek an internal review of the decision. Internal review typically involves a staff member at the EPA, independent of the original decision maker, conducting a review of the original decision.

What decisions can be internally reviewed by the EPA?

A right of internal review is available for

  • a decision to issue a penalty notice
  • the environmental risk level determined for an environment protection licence
  • certain decisions made under the Government Information (Public Access) Act 2009
  • certain conduct set out in the Privacy and Personal Information Protection Act 1998 and the Health Records and Information Privacy Act 2002.

This page does not include information about how to complain about the conduct of an EPA officer. This is a separate process and you can find more information.

How do I request an internal review?

Penalty notices

You can request a review of a penalty notice if

  • you believe there has been a mistake in issuing the penalty notice or
  • there are other reasons that contributed to the offence.

The Revenue NSW website describes how you can request an internal review.

Risk-based licensing - Environmental risk level

The EPA’s risk assessment process describes how the EPA determines environmental risk level for your licence.

If you’re not satisfied with the environmental risk level determined for your licence, the EPA internal review guidelines (PDF 144KB) describe how you can request an internal review (DOCX 106KB). 

Obtaining government information

You can request an internal review of certain decisions made by the EPA under the Government Information (Public Access) Act 2009.

The EPA’s online guidance about obtaining information describes how you can request an internal review.

Privacy and personal and health information

You can request an internal review if you believe the EPA may have breached your privacy, or have not complied with a request for access or amendment to your personal or health information under the Privacy and Personal Information Protection Act 1998 or the Health Records and Information Privacy Act 2002.

The EPA’s Privacy Management Plan describes how you can request an internal review (PDF 675KB).

External review

If you are a person who is the subject of a decision made by the EPA and you are dissatisfied with the decision, you may be able to apply for a review by an appropriate external body (such as the NSW Land and Environment Court or the NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal) instead of internal review or after the completion of internal review.

The notice, order, licence or other statutory instrument issued to you will generally set out your rights of merits review and time limits that may apply if available under the legislation.

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