New opportunity for the environment and heritage

Minister for the Environment, Minister for Heritage and Assistant Minister for Planning Rob Stokes today welcomed the opportunity for better coordination across key portfolios following the establishment of the Department of Planning and Environment.

Mutawintji Historic Site is one of the most significant Aboriginal sacred places in the far west of New South Wales.

“This decision demonstrates a commitment from the NSW Liberals & Nationals Government to focus on better environmental outcomes and greater coordination of planning, environment, heritage and local government issues,” Mr Stokes said.

“The Environment portfolio has been one that I have long had a passion for and I am honoured to be given this opportunity by the Premier.

“The chance to deliver better environmental protection will require careful planning and robust consultation with stakeholders to ensure we move away from the current patchwork of regulatory approaches.

“The State needs to assist sustainable agricultural and economic development while providing best practice laws that deliver better environmental protection.

“I look forward to this opportunity to help deliver coordinated thinking across planning, environment, heritage and local government departments with my new colleagues Pru Goward and Paul Toole.

“I would also like to pay tribute to my colleague and friend Robyn Parker, who delivered the toughest environmental regulations in the country, established an independent environmental regulator and pioneered ground-breaking new approaches to threatened species conservation.”