Smart Environmental Reforms are set to get Australia back on track

Urban Development Institute of Australia applauds the Morrison Government’s announced $128.5 million environmental budget reforms package, which sets Australia on the pathway towards a simple, streamlined system for preserving critical flora and fauna.

“It cannot be over emphasised how important these reforms are for the Australian Economy,” said Maxwell Shifman, UDIA National President.

“Currently the largest single regulatory impediment for balancing the protection of the environment and properly designing development, is the complexity and inefficiency of environmental approvals themselves,” he added.

With critically depleted housing supply across the spectrum, supply boosting measures to deliver development ready land now, is vital to ensure we do not end up with an accelerating affordability crisis. Streamlining environmental approvals is a key factor in unlocking that delivery.

“We are not about removing the requirements we are about making them as efficient as possible and avoiding duplication,” said Shifman.

The Budget reforms announced today included critical initiatives that will protect the environment and steps us all closer to the clear effective environmental system all industries want to see:

  • We are extremely pleased that the government will spend $37.9 million on streamlining assessment processes which will make it faster and easier to balance environmental and development issues.
  • Most critical of all, a further $10 Million for a single touch approval process industry has been recommending to ensure complexity and inefficiency is cut out of the system.
  • $28.4 million to support informed decision making, $27.9 million to continue time assessment determinations, $12 million to modernise environmental offsets policies and $9.5 million to improve compliance are all setting the environmental system up for success in the future and much needed reform.
  • Distinctly critical for the system is $4.9 million for reforms to strengthen the knowledge base for protected plants and animals, to ensure decisions are fact based and driven by science.
  • $62.3 million dollars for delivery of 10 regional plans in priority development regions for resources projects is important and we are keen to see these projects include housing related projects that are desperately needed at this time.
  • “These are a well balanced set of reforms that show Government has a thoughtful approach to the environment and the economy that are the first steps to help Australia Get back on track,” said Maxwell Shifman.

“The devil is always in the detail, and UDIA National looks forward to working with Government to properly implement these reforms to support housing development across the spectrum” Shifman added.

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Media Enquiries:

Deanna Lane | National Media & Communications Manager | 0416 295 898 | media@udia.com.au