Council of Australian Governments, November 1997
- Attachment 1: Matters of National Environmental Significance
- Attachment 2: Environmental approval processes
- Attachment 3: Compliance with state environment and planning laws
- Attachment 4: National environmental programmes
In November 1997, the Council of Australian Governments (COAG) agreed in principle to the Heads of Agreement on Commonwealth/State Roles and Responsibilities for the Environment. Subsequently, all heads of governments and the Australian Local Government Association signed the agreement.
In the agreement, the States and Territories and the Commonwealth agreed that reform in the following five areas was needed to develop a more effective framework for intergovernmental relations on the environment:
- matters of National Environmental Significance;
- environmental assessment and approval processes;
- listing, protection and management of heritage places;
- compliance with State environmental and planning legislation; and
- better delivery of national environmental programmes.
A number of key aspects of the Heads of Agreement have been implemented by the Commonwealth Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 .
Heads of agreement on Commonwealth/State roles and responsibilities for the environment between the:
- Commonwealth of Australia;
- State of New South Wales;
- State of Victoria;
- State of Queensland;
- State of Western Australia;
- State of South Australia;
- State of Tasmania;
- Australian Capital Territory;
- Northern Territory of Australia; and
- Australian Local Government Association.