Regulatory, policy and legislative updates

Summary of recent regulatory, policy and legislative updates. Listed with most recent update first.

Date of change Summary Legislation, regulation or policy
27 May 2024

Forestry: amendment of the site-specific biodiversity conditions to ensure further protection for greater gliders

In addition to the protections starting on 16 February 2024:

  • The first transect of the search and survey must start within 30 minutes of sunset to increase the likelihood of observing gliders leaving their dens.
  • FCNSW must implement a 25 m logging exclusion zone around any tree in which a greater glider is sighted during FCNSW’s search and survey.

Media release 

25 March 2024

New national standard for the environmental risk management of industrial chemicals

The regulation of environmentally hazardous chemicals now occurs through the Protection of the Environment Operations Act 1997 (POEO Act) and key provisions from the Environmentally Hazardous Chemicals Act 1985 (EHC Act) and regulation will be transferred to the POEO Act. The EHC Act is now repealed.

Environmental Legislation Amendment (Hazardous Chemicals) Act 2024

Learn more



21 March 2024

Landmark environmental regulatory reforms

  • Doubling maximum penalties
  • Raising on-the-spot fines
  • Environmental recall powers
  • Public transparency
  • Strengthened investigations
  • Licence bans

Summary of changes

Explanatory note for Bill

Environment Protection Legislation Amendment (Stronger Regulation and Penalties) Bill 2024

Bill for legislative reform passed Parliament on 21 March 2024

28 February 2024

Integrated waste tracking solution

Enables waste consignors, transporters and receivers to track and report on all types of hazardous and regulated waste in one system. It is a key step towards delivering a nationally consistent hazardous waste tracking and data system, a commitment under the National Waste Policy Action Plan and NSW Waste and Sustainable Materials Strategy 2041.

Learn more



16 February 2024

Forestry: updates to Coastal IFOAs to ensure further protection for greater gliders

Change to the Coastal Integrated Forestry Operations Approval (CIFOA) protocol, introducing a site-specific biodiversity condition for greater gliders that requires the retention of additional hollow bearing trees.

This includes undertaking surveys for greater gliders and their dens at night, with results available to the EPA within 7 days of the survey and extra tree retention provisions.

Learn more

Phase-outs from June 2022

Banning of certain single-use plastics

The NSW Plastics Action Plan highlights the phase-out of certain single-use plastics as a key action, with a timetable for phasing out the most littered plastic items. The Plastic Reduction and Circular Economy Act 2021 (PRCE Act) was made in November 2021 to enable this to occur.

The legislation also provides a comprehensive framework that helps NSW transition towards a circular economy where materials and resources are valued and kept in the productive economy while creating jobs and protecting the environment and the community.

Learn more about the bans, read guidance materials