This page relates to EPA’s compliance and enforcement role under the Environment Protection Act 2017, which is intended to come into effect on 1 July 2021. To find out about EPA’s compliance policies and tools under the Environment Protection Act 1970 visit our page about compliance and enforcement under the 1970 Act.

A remedial notice or a direction is issued to:  

  • bring a duty holder into compliance
  • outline the steps to deal with the harm, waste or contamination.  

EPA’s draft Compliance and enforcement policy (publication 1798) explains the role and use of remedial notices.

About remedial notices

Remedial notices are issued if it is found that on reasonable grounds a duty holder:  

  • isn’t complying with the Environment Protection Act 2017 (the Act).  
  • waste or contamination is present that requires treatment.  

Authorised officers issue remedial notices, including:  

  • Improvement notice – for not complying with the Act. Requires action to remedy the non-compliance  
  • Prohibition notice – for not complying with the Act. The person must stop the activity and remedy the issue
  • Notice to investigate – where an officer believes there is contamination, pollution or waste that requires further investigation  
  • Environmental action notice – where an officer believes there is contamination, pollution and unlawful waste. The notice may require clean-up measures such as taking waste to a facility that can accept it.
  • Non-disturbance notice – this secures a site or situation, usually relevant to an investigation.  

About directions  

Authorised officers can give a direction when they believe an activity puts another person’s health or safety at risk.  

Directions are normally spoken to the person in control of the activity that poses the risk. Written confirmation follows the spoken direction.  

An authorised officer must reasonably believe there’s a risk when providing a direction.  

Failure to follow a direction without a lawful reason is a serious offence and may result in prosecution.  

About site management orders

A site management order is a new tool that allows EPA to establish long-term controls. This ensures safe management of sites that would otherwise pose an ongoing risk to human health and the environment.  

Site management orders are given to owners or occupiers of land that may be contaminated. Site management orders are for long-term land management or restoring it to its former condition.  

Site management orders can include:  

  • long-term maintenance of environmental controls, such as installing and maintaining infrastructure
  • monitoring site contamination  
  • ongoing reporting requirements.  

How EPA follows up on directions, notices and orders

Duty holders who don’t fulfil their obligations by a set date can face prosecution.  

Civil remedies in court are also possible. They may require you to take an action. These actions help prevent, minimise or remedy non-compliance.

Read more

New laws and your business

Compliance and enforcement

Reviewed 18 August 2020