Preserve the environment, or pave it? (public lecture)

Published 30 August 2017

The most senior environmental law judge in Australia will deliver this year’s UNE Sir Frank Kitto Public Lecture on 1 September.

The Honourable Justice Brian Preston, Chief Judge of the NSW Land and Environment Court, will discuss how development benefits some and burdens others in a lecture titled “What’s equity got to do with the environment?”.

“How we continue to maintain a healthy, diverse and productive environment brings into question principles of equity, between people of the current generation, people of future generations and between humans and nature,” Justice Preston said. “There are great discrepancies between meeting our development needs and protecting our environments. Our current consumption amounts to 1.6 of the Earth’s resources and what we are passing on to future generations are increasingly impoverished environments and reduced opportunities for development.”

While visiting UNE, Justice Preston will also launch the book Environmental Justice and Land Use Conflict: The governance of mineral and gas resource development, written by Associate Professor Amanda Kennedy, deputy director of the Australian Centre for Agriculture and Law at UNE. Her book explores the issue of environmental justice through the eyes of three communities in NSW and the US involved in conflict over coal, coal gas and shale gas extraction.

The annual Sir Frank Kitto lecture, hosted by the School of Law, honours the former UNE Chancellor and Justice of the High Court of Australia, and is one of the highlights of the university calendar.

Justice Preston’s lecture starts at 1.30pm at the JP Belshaw Lecture Theatre (LT1) in the EBL Building at UNE on Trevenna Road.