Webinar: Reviewing national environmental assessment legislation | Lessons from Canada

Published 11th Dec 18 12:00 AM

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There are many parallels between environmental assessment systems in Australia and Canada with both operating within a federal system of government. In Australia, several groups such as the Australian Panel of Experts in Environmental Law, are calling for a major overhaul of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act (EPBC Act).

Canada in one step ahead. The Canadian Government has introduced legislation that seeks to restore public trust in how development decisions are made and better reflect the values that are important to Canadians. These include early, inclusive and meaningful public engagement; nation-to-nation, Inuit-Crown, and government-to-government partnerships with Indigenous peoples; timely decisions based on the best available science and Indigenous traditional knowledge; and sustainability for present and future generations. The legislation will also establish the Impact Assessment Agency of Canada to lead federal project reviews and coordinate consultations with Indigenous peoples. The Agency would coordinate with provinces and territories to ensure one project, one review.

With the next ten year review of the EPBC Act due in 2019, what are the lessons for Australia from Canada's review? Are there models or ideas that should be adopted in Australia? Do we need to ensure that Australia's Indigenous people have a greater engagement in the environmental assessment system, such as through the approaches proposed in Canada?

This webinar will provide an opportunity to learn more about Canada's reforms and to consider how Australia needs to reshape its legislation. With recent criticism by the New Zealand Productivity Commission and others of the Resource Management Act, there may also be some lessons for over the ditch.

When: Wednesday 13 February 2019

Time: 12:00pm - 1:00pm (Australian Eastern Daylight Savings Time)

Meet the Presenter

Christine Loth Bown |

Christine Loth-Bown was appointed Vice President of the Policy Development Sector in April 2016. Reporting to the President, Christine is responsible for legislative, regulatory and policy elements of environmental assessment. Prior to joining the Agency, Christine was the Director General of Ecosystems Management at Fisheries and Oceans Canada.

Christine has over 21 years of experience in policy development and program implementation. Holding senior roles at the Canadian Tourism Commission (CTC) and Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO), Christine has led the development of strategic policy initiatives, and corporate planning frameworks including: the policy changes to the Fisheries Protection Program; the 2007-2011 and 2008-2012 Corporate Plans for the CTC and the 2005-2010 Strategic Plan for DFO. She has also managed and coordinated a number of federal horizontal policy frameworks including Canada’s Oceans Strategy and Gathering Strength: Canada’s Aboriginal Action Plan.

Christine holds a Master of Arts in Canadian Studies from Carleton University, Ottawa, Ontario and a Bachelor of Arts (Honours) in Canadian Studies and Political Science from Glendon College, York University, Toronto, Ontario. She lives in Ottawa with her husband and son.

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Earn CPD Points

By attending this event you will record 1 hour of continuing professional development towards the Certified Environmental Practitioner Scheme.

Event details

When: 13 Feb 2019
12:00 PM - 1:00 PM

Cost: $10 for members, $20 for non members

Registrations Open: 1st Jan 19 12:00 AM

Registrations Close: 14th Feb 19 10:00 AM

Contact: EIANZ Central Office on AU +613 8593 4140, NZ +64 9887 6972 or

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Published 11th Dec 18 12:00 AM