Department of the Environment

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Publications archive

Disclaimer

Key departmental publications, e.g. annual reports, budget papers and program guidelines are available in our online archive.

Much of the material listed on these archived web pages has been superseded, or served a particular purpose at a particular time. It may contain references to activities or policies that have no current application. Many archived documents may link to web pages that have moved or no longer exist, or may refer to other documents that are no longer available.

Ben J

Ben J

Home State

Victoria

University

Monash University
The University of Melbourne

Degree/s

Bachelor of Economics (Hons)
Master of Environment (Policy and Governance)

Background

After finishing my Bachelor's degree, I embarked on a 5-year work and travel adventure around the world. Through numerous hiking and camping trips throughout these countries, I became deeply interested in environmental issues, in particular, the capacity of Government policy to shape a given region's environmental quality. As a result, I enrolled in the Master of Environment program in Melbourne and returned home. Whilst studying, I started up a small on-line business selling baby slings which continues to operate to this day. After completing my Masters, I volunteered with the Australian Conservation Foundation for 3 months, was then put on as a policy consultant for another 6 months until I was accepted into the graduate program.

First Placement

Marine Bioregional Planning (north) Section

This section has the responsibility for developing a marine bioregional plan for the north Commonwealth region. The plan will assist in better understanding the impacts of actions on the Commonwealth marine environment and in determining the circumstances under which actions can take place. The plan will also help establish a network of marine protected areas that is currently being developed in all Australian Waters.

My task within this rotation was to manage a project to update the Department's EPBC information base with new and improved information that had been collected through the marine bioregional planning process. This included liaising across six separate teams and three divisions, collating relevant information and presenting it in a format suitable for uploading into the Department's EPBC information base. I was also involved in various contract management duties such as writing request for tenders, drafting contracts and organising procurement processes for different size expenditures.

Second Placement

Commonwealth Environmental Water Holder Section

This section is responsible for managing water entitlements bought under the Commonwealth's Water Buy-Back initiative. This includes offering advice on environmental watering priorities at a catchment level. My main task was to write a report into the socio-economic benefits of environmental flows and to detail the methods available to quantify these benefits. Such quantification allows for a fuller consideration of these benefits in decision making, such as weighing up the costs and benefits of competing uses of water. I was also involved in researching and recommending environmental watering priorities in NSW and documenting these in a brief.

Third Placement

Indigenous Partnerships Section

This section is responsible for implementing the 'Caring for our Country program' as it relates to partnering indigenous communities, indigenous emissions trading and remote and northern priority areas. My role in the section will be primarily concerned with assisting to implement the indigenous emissions trading scheme, which aims to assist indigenous communities to enter the carbon market through an altered savanna burning regime. I will also be involved in helping determine what is involved in fulfilling the 'northern and remote priority areas' objective under Caring for our Country.

'the best thing about working for us ... is the environment'