LAWS12067 - Environmental Law

General Information

Unit Synopsis

The environmental movement is strong and getting stronger. It is an important social revolution. Environmental law is a new and exciting area of legal practice. The Constitution of Australia does not include power for the Federal Parliament to make laws in relation to the environment. In this unit we will consider how the Commonwealth does have a role to play in environmental law despite its lack of constitutional power. We consider the role of State Governments at the Parliamentary and Executive level. The impact of environmental groups has gained more momentum year by year; after an initial explosion of publicity which led to blockade of the Franklin River and ultimately the High Court Tasmanian Dam decision in 1983. New philosophies such as the precautionary principle will be explored and explained. The apparent conflict between environmental law rights which are in the public domain and landowners' property and contractual rights in relation to land will be considered. We will also deal with environmental litigation, including prosecution and the difficulties which face environmental groups. Discussion points include recent developments such as the extraction of coal seam gas and the development of the Gas Fields Commission. We explore the process of environmental impact assessment.

Details

Level Undergraduate
Unit Level 2
Credit Points 6
Student Contribution Band 3
Fraction of Full-Time Student Load 0.125
Pre-requisites or Co-requisites

Prerequisites: LAWS11057, LAWS11059, LAWS11061, LAWS11062, LAWS11063, LAWS11064, LAWS11060, (LAWS11065 or LAWS12055)

Important note: Students enrolled in a subsequent unit who failed their pre-requisite unit, should drop the subsequent unit before the census date or within 10 working days of Fail grade notification. Students who do not drop the unit in this timeframe cannot later drop the unit without academic and financial liability. See details in the Assessment Policy and Procedure (Higher Education Coursework).

Class Timetable View Unit Timetable
Residential School No Residential School

Unit Availabilities from Term 1 - 2020

There are no availabilities for this unit on or after Term 1 - 2020

Attendance Requirements

All on-campus students are expected to attend scheduled classes – in some units, these classes are identified as a mandatory (pass/fail) component and attendance is compulsory. International students, on a student visa, must maintain a full time study load and meet both attendance and academic progress requirements in each study period (satisfactory attendance for International students is defined as maintaining at least an 80% attendance record).

Assessment Overview

Recommended Student Time Commitment

Each 6-credit Undergraduate unit at CQUniversity requires an overall time commitment of an average of 12.5 hours of study per week, making a total of 150 hours for the unit.

Assessment Tasks

Assessment Task Weighting
1. Written Assessment 25%
2. Written Assessment 25%
3. Written Assessment 50%

This is a graded unit: your overall grade will be calculated from the marks or grades for each assessment task, based on the relative weightings shown in the table above. You must obtain an overall mark for the unit of at least 50%, or an overall grade of ‘pass’ in order to pass the unit. If any ‘pass/fail’ tasks are shown in the table above they must also be completed successfully (‘pass’ grade). You must also meet any minimum mark requirements specified for a particular assessment task, as detailed in the ‘assessment task’ section (note that in some instances, the minimum mark for a task may be greater than 50%).

Consult the University’s Grades and Results Policy for more details of interim results and final grades

Past Exams

To view Past Exams, please login
Previous Feedback

Term 3 - 2019 : The overall satisfaction for students in the last offering of this course was 4.5 (on a 5 point Likert scale), based on a 50% response rate.

Feedback, Recommendations and Responses

Every unit is reviewed for enhancement each year. At the most recent review, the following staff and student feedback items were identified and recommendations were made.

Source: John Milburn, unit coordinator.
Feedback
Unit content and delivery.
Recommendation
Continue with the assessment regime and the general format of this unit. I updated the unit content to reflect the new planning regime introduced in Queensland, with an increased emphasis on issues associated with industry practice.
Action Taken
For the 2019 offering of this unit, I did continue with the assessment regime and the general format of this unit. One student provided feedback that the assessment requirements were overwhelming but generally the students responded favourably to the content.
Source: Student feedback and self-evaluation.
Feedback
Interaction with students and between students using UCROO.
Recommendation
Continue using UCROO as the primary means of online discussion with students and between students.
Action Taken
As UCROO was discontinued as a learning platform, I conducted my discussions with students through Moodle, which I found to be an inferior forum.
Source: John Milburn
Feedback
In term 3, 2019 for LAWS12067, I continued with a curriculum that has a major emphasis on the practical application of environmental law. While the text provides excellent academic content, greater emphasis could be placed on teaching environmental law by reference to materials which supplement the practical application component of the unit.
Recommendation
Change the textbook, to allow for greater reference to the practical application of environmental law.
Action Taken
Nil.
Source: John Milburn
Feedback
At its next offering, with the introduction of a new textbook, the content and presentation of the unit should be remodelled.
Recommendation
Decrease the reading component of the unit and increase the practical skills component of the unit.
Action Taken
Nil.
Unit learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this unit, you will be able to:

  1. Describe the basic structure, institutions, key functions and processes of the Australian legal systems within which environmental law operates.
  2. Analyse major topics and key issues such as environmental property rights, access to and management of the environment, environmental protection measures and environmental litigation with reference to the relevant sources of legal authority..
  3. Identify and respond to the types of legal problems and issues likely to be embedded in commonly encountered environment-related activities.
  4. Explain the environmental law litigation process and alternative dispute resolution procedures.

Alignment of Assessment Tasks to Learning Outcomes
Assessment Tasks Learning Outcomes
1 2 3 4
1 - Written Assessment
2 - Written Assessment
3 - Written Assessment
Alignment of Graduate Attributes to Learning Outcomes
Introductory Level
Intermediate Level
Graduate Level
Graduate Attributes Learning Outcomes
1 2 3 4
1 - Communication
2 - Problem Solving
3 - Critical Thinking
5 - Team Work
8 - Ethical practice
Alignment of Assessment Tasks to Graduate Attributes
Introductory Level
Intermediate Level
Graduate Level
Assessment Tasks Graduate Attributes
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9
1 - Written Assessment
2 - Written Assessment
3 - Written Assessment