Authorised officers and enforcement officers

The role of authorised officers is to ensure that businesses, government and individuals comply with environment protection legislation in NSW.

These officers can inspect businesses and premises, provide guidance and advice on how to comply, as well as enforce the law.

Authorised officers have regulatory powers and functions under environment protection legislation. These powers vary depending on whether an officer is from the NSW EPA, local government or another relevant agency and what they have been authorised to do. For example, authorised officers may have the power to enter premises to assess compliance, require action to reduce environmental impacts, take samples, ask questions, or require information and records.

Officers who have the power to issue penalty notices under the Protection of the Environment Operations Act 1997 or its regulations are called enforcement officers rather than authorised officers.  Relevant officers could be appointed as an enforcement officer, or as an authorised officer, or both.

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