What it contains

EPA’s Compliance and enforcement policy sets out our approach to our compliance and enforcement activities from 1 July 2021.

This policy covers EPA's:

  • compliance and enforcement approach for supporting and directing compliance
  • principles and criteria for decision-making, including the consideration of risk, and behaviour and motivations for compliance.
  • tools to address non-compliance, such as remedial notices, infringement notices, sanctions, civil proceedings and criminal prosecutions. 

The policy provides clarity on how we will exercise our regulatory powers. It also explains that we take a no tolerance approach to non-compliance and will take proportionate regulatory action against those who fail to meet their obligations.


This Compliance and Enforcement Policy complements other key policies, including our Permissions Scheme Policy (publication 1799). Together, these policies and associated guidelines set the platform for the implementation and delivery of the EP Act.

Useful definitions

Compliance: in this policy compliance is defined as the adherence to the legal requirements and obligations of the Act. Compliance is an ongoing process, so people and businesses need to regularly assess their risk and seek to improve their methods for eliminating or minimising those risks.

Enforcement: is the use of influence, authority and statutory powers under the Act to achieve or compel compliance.


Publication number
Number of pages
Release date
23 June 2021
Document version

Reviewed 23 November 2023