Communication and engagement


By 2027 we aim to have:

  • Established a new model of engagement for working with the community and industry.
  • Increased stakeholder satisfaction about engagement and engagement mechanisms.
  • Increased collaboration with other environmental regulators to enable better regulation and implement continuous improvements.
  • Implemented a deliberate communication and education program that aims to build greater trust and respect of the community and industry.

On track

  • We are committed to increased stakeholder satisfaction about engagement and engagement mechanisms.
  • We are delivering ongoing actions aimed at harnessing collective knowledge, such as facilitating regular industry specific engagement meetings (Action 6.4), to best ensure strong environmental outcomes.


Action status indicator

  • Complete
  • Awaiting commencement
  • In progress
  • Ongoing
  • Closed


  • We published the DES Stakeholder Charter to continue to build constructive, respectful, and productive relationships with external stakeholders, including peak industry bodies.


  • This action is due annually.
  • We published the DES Stakeholder Charter in January 2022. Consequently, we are preparing to undertake the first annual review of the effectiveness of the charter in 2023.


  • We regularly work with other regulators across Australia to inform and improve our regulatory actions.
  • We are a principal member of the Heads of EPA Australia and New Zealand (HEPA). HEPA is an informal alliance of environmental regulation leaders from Australia and New Zealand that provides collective leadership across all jurisdictions in Australia and New Zealand to protect the environment and communities.
  • Officers within the department are members of the Australasian Environmental Law Enforcement and Regulators network (AELERT). This allows the officers to participate in capability building and knowledge sharing with other regulators.
  • Our officers also participate in functions hosted by the ANZSOG National Regulators Community of Practice (NRCoP). The NRCoP is an active network of public sector regulators from all three levels of government and from every regulatory sector, professional background, role and level of seniority.


  • We facilitate regular industry specific engagement meetings, for instance with the waste industry, heavy construction materials industry and resources industry. These meetings provide opportunities to discuss operational matters and for two-way feedback.
  • In addition to addressing specific needs, we meet regularly with a broad range of community, wildlife and conservation groups.
  • As part of our response to Cleanaway New Chum odour issues, we worked with the local community and used citizen science to deliver community air quality monitoring.


  • We are taking steps to implement the Gurra Gurra Framework and looking at additional ways to engage with Traditional Owners in our regulatory activities such as site visits with Traditional Owners for EIS projects and consideration of human rights and cultural impacts in our decision making processes.
  • We co-designed a five-step program with Queensland’s 17 Indigenous Councils to reframe the regulatory relationship with the department and established the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Local Government, Environmental Services Support Program.
  • We have commenced a Cultural Safety Planning initiative to enhance our cultural capabilities and embed a principles and values-based approach to facilitate deep and mutually beneficial relationships with First Nations people.