LAWS5183 Environmental Law

6 points

If this unit does not have an online alternative, then students who are presently unable to enter Western Australia and whose studies would be delayed by an inability to complete this unit, should contact the unit coordinator (details given on this page) to ascertain, on an individual case-by-case basis, if alternate arrangements can be made to support their study in this unit.

Not available in 2021UWA (Perth)Face to face Predominantly face-to-face. On campus attendance required to complete this unit. May have accompanying resources online.
This unit examines key concepts in environmental protection law in Western Australia in its national and international contexts. It focuses on the law relating to pollution control and environmental impact assessment. The unit analyses a range of legal techniques and principles applied to environmental protection, including an introduction to the new regulatory challenges of reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
Students are able to (1) describe the key concepts of 'environment', 'environmental harm', and 'pollution', and the guiding principles of ecologically sustainable development and environmental justice at the State and Commonwealth levels; (2) explain the principal legal techniques for environmental ‘governance', ‘regulation' and ‘liabilities'; (3) analyse the legal and ethical issues that arise in environmental decision-making and propose solutions to them; (4) propose possible solutions to the ethical and legal that arise in environmental decision making; (5) collaborate through listening, negotiation and advocacy to promote mutual understanding of environmental legal knowledge; and; and (6) develop convincing, coherent and consistent arguments to communicate legal knowledge, orally and in writing, to address the challenges of environmental sustainability and justice, including global climate change..
Indicative assessments in this unit are as follows: (1) tutorial exercises and (2) exam OR research essay. Further information is available in the unit outline.

Supplementary assessment is not available in this unit except in the case of a Juris Doctor Student who has obtained a mark of 45 to 49 and is currently enrolled in this unit, and it is the only remaining unit that the student must pass in order to complete their course.
Unit Coordinator(s)
Professor Alex Gardner
Unit rules
Juris Doctor (JD) students: LAWS4101 Foundations of Law and Lawyering and 30 points from: LAWS4102 Criminal Law, LAWS4103 Contract, LAWS4104 Property, LAWS4106 Torts, LAWS4107 Land Law, LAWS4108 Foundations of Public Law, LAWS5106 Legal Theory and Ethics or LAWS4109 Legal Theory and Ethics
Advisable prior study:
LAWS5102 Administrative Law and LAWS5101 Constitutional Law
LAWS5540 Environmental Protection Law
Contact hours
3 hours per week
The Reading Guide refers students to prescribed and recommended reading in issued reading materials and on-line and the LMS site includes links to some generally useful website materials.

Bates G, Environmental Law in Australia, 10th edn: LexisNexis Butterworths 2019

  • The availability of units in Semester 1, 2, etc. was correct at the time of publication but may be subject to change.
  • All students are responsible for identifying when they need assistance to improve their academic learning, research, English language and numeracy skills; seeking out the services and resources available to help them; and applying what they learn. Students are encouraged to register for free online support through GETSmart; to help themselves to the extensive range of resources on UWA's STUDYSmarter website; and to participate in WRITESmart and (ma+hs)Smart drop-ins and workshops.
  • Unit readings, including any essential textbooks, are listed in the unit outline for each unit, one week prior the commencement of study. The unit outline will be available via the LMS and the UWA Handbook one week prior the commencement of study. Reading lists and essential textbooks are subject to change each semester. Information on essential textbooks will also be made available on the Essential Textbooks. This website is updated regularly in the lead up to semester so content may change. It is recommended that students purchase essential textbooks for convenience due to the frequency with which they will be required during the unit. A limited number of textbooks will be made available from the Library in print and will also be made available online wherever possible. Essential textbooks can be purchased from the commercial vendors to secure the best deal. The Student Guild can provide assistance on where to purchase books if required. Books can be purchased second hand at the Guild Secondhand bookshop (second floor, Guild Village), which is located on campus.