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EPA has powers under the Environment Protection Act 1970 (the Act) to prevent harm from pollution and waste.  

We can issue a sanction when there’s been a breach of the law. A sanction is an enforcement tool which results in an offender being punished or penalised for breaches of the Act.  

Sanctions range from a warning to prosecution, which could result in a fine or the loss of a licence or permit.  

Our Compliance and Enforcement Policy (publication 1388.3) covers all of the sanctions EPA can seek.   

EPA sanctions can include: 

  • notices of contravention, where there is a major ongoing breach of the law requiring further enforcement action
  • infringement notices, or fines, where the impacts aren’t serious enough to prosecute.  

We support responsive sanctioning, which means we use it to improve environmental outcomes.  

Read next

More information on EPA sanctions

Notices of contravention

Infringement notices

Reviewed 7 November 2019