The department participates in strategic meetings of the OECD’s Environment Policy Committee. The Committee plays a role in identifying effective and economically efficient responses to environmental challenges – from polluted air to municipal waste, from scarce water to ozone depletion, and from biodiversity loss to climate change.
OECD Environmental Performance Review
The OECD is undertaking its third mandatory Environmental Performance Review of Australia from 2017 to 2019. As an OECD member, Australia is required to participate in this process every ten years. The Review will provide an independent, fact-based assessment of Australia with targeted recommendations to encourage further reforms from a national perspective. Australia’s previous reviews were published in 1998 and 2007 and can be found on the OECD’s website.
The Review will contain a number of compulsory chapters including key environmental trends, environmental governance and management, and green growth. It will also include two chapters on topics chosen by Australia, and agreed by the OECD, for in-depth analysis. Australia has chosen ‘threatened species’ and ‘chemicals management’ as its focus topics.
The OECD Review Team visited Australia from 20 to 28 March (Canberra, Melbourne and Sydney) and met with Commonwealth, state and territory government officials, as well as a variety of stakeholders, including academics, non-government organisations, industry and Indigenous representatives.
Minister for the Environment and Energy, the Hon Josh Frydenberg MP, and Assistant Minister for the Environment, the Hon Melissa Price MP met with the OECD Review Team during their visit.
Key steps and timeline
There are a number of steps involved in the review process:
- Review preparation and information collection (March-November 2017): The Department, in cooperation with relevant government departments and agencies, provides background information to the OECD to help inform the review.
- Review Mission (March 2018): The OECD Review team visits Australia to meet with government officials and other experts and stakeholders.
- Policy review meetings (September-November 2018): The OECD produces its draft report, which is then considered by OECD member countries.
- Launch (2019): The final report is published online.
The OECD has now commenced drafting the review. The Review Team will return to Australia in September to conduct a series of meetings with senior officials in Commonwealth, state and territory government agencies. During this visit the Review Team will test its findings and ask for feedback on the review’s draft recommendations.
The full draft of the review will be made available to OECD member countries in October, ahead of an OECD peer review meeting in Paris in November. At that meeting, Australia’s review will be assessed and discussed by the 35 member countries of the OECD, and Australia will again have the opportunity to comment on the draft recommendations and provide final feedback on the full draft.
The review will be launched in Australia in early 2019.
Throughout the Review process, the department has, and will continue to, undertake extensive consultation with Australian government agencies, State, Territory and Local governments, independent experts, representatives from non-government organisations, industry, and others, to ensure we are able to provide the most comprehensive information to the OECD.
More information on the Review can be found in Australia’s Environmental Performance Review brochure, produced by the OECD: http://www.oecd.org/environment/country-reviews/OECD_EPR_Australia_review_process2.pdf.