Jacinta’s practice covers development and project approvals and environmental assessment for residential, commercial and industrial development and a wide range of infrastructure projects, including advising on issues such as cultural and built heritage, native vegetation, threatened species, bushfire, water, waste, contaminated land and climate change. She advises clients on a wide range of issues concerning the use and development of land under relevant state and Commonwealth environment and planning legislation.
Jacinta's practice also covers compliance, responses to environmental incidents and clean up notices and EPA/regulator investigations. Jacinta regularly advises on the management of obligations and risks associated with contaminated land, waste, climate change and environmental due diligence and audits and licence requirements and compliance.
She has significant experience in environment and planning litigation and is a regular practitioner in the NSW Land and Environment Court, and related actions and appeals in the Supreme Court, Federal Court and High Court.
Jacinta's skills in identifying and managing risk, implementing policies and training programs and establishing compliance frameworks combine to give clients a comprehensive, proactive and practical position on all environment and planning matters. She is considered a trusted advisor by clients.
Jacinta is a core member of the firm's resilience team. The team delivers solutions to clients with the aim of building organisational resilience.
Jacinta is an active member of many industry bodies, including the Planning Institute of Australia, where she was a member of the executive for many years, Environmental Planning Law Association and ASBG and is recognised in Best Lawyers, Acritas and Doyles.
Jacinta has also been appointed to the Committee for Australian Institute of Urban Studies (AIUS).
- Environmental impact assessment, approvals and licences – advising on and assisting corporate and government clients with the requirements and process for assessment, approvals and licences for a wide range of projects, covering commercial, residential, industrial development and significant infrastructure projects and dealing with issues such as heritage, biodiversity, contamination, waste and water.
- Environmental and planning compliance – advising on various construction and operational compliance issues associated with client activities, including the requirements of approvals and licences, obtaining the necessary modifications and variations to those approvals and licences, advising on environmental management plans, assisting with regulators and approval authorities, and communications with contractors/principals, the community and other stakeholders.
- Incident response/regulatory investigations – assisting clients to respond to incidents and regulatory investigation including, clean up notices/remediation, regulatory orders, reporting obligations, regulator information requests/interviews, submissions and related actions and prosecutions, including for pollution incidents, impacts on heritage and threatened species and breaches of planning approvals.
- Biodiversity – advising various large land owners and government authorities on the new biodiversity requirements, impacts on current activities and future development, including advising on associated biodiversity agreements.
- Indigenous heritage- advising on range of Indigenous heritage issues under state and commonwealth legislation, including heritage impact assessments, consultation and stakeholder engagements as apply to Indigenous heritage, requirements for due diligence, approvals/permits for new works and responses to discovery/unexpected finds in course of construction works, regulator investigations and acting in related litigation.
- Waste – advising clients, including in the course of asset management reviews and construction works, on the requirements for the storage, transport and disposal of waste, related contracts and liability, responding to investigations into compliance, due diligence requirements and developing systems and processes to ensure compliance with waste legislation requirements.
- Contaminated land – advising clients on contaminated land, in the context of ownership/management/development/purchase and disposal of land, managing associated risks, dealing with investigations and remediation and allocation of responsibility for contamination, including advising on contracts and dealing with experts and other parties, most recently advising various clients on issues associated with PFAS.
- Litigation – acted for many applicants and respondents in a comprehensive range of environment and planning litigation including planning appeals, compulsory acquisition matters, valuation/rating appeals, prosecutions and enforcement actions and judicial/administrative law review proceedings (challenging approvals and planning instruments) including in the Federal Court and High Court.
- Policies/procedures/training – review and advise on environment and planning compliance and risks across the business and development of procedures and training to manage compliance and key risks on issues such as environmental assessment, licence compliance, contamination, waste, biodiversity, heritage, incident response and due diligence and conducting staff and director/officer training.
- Due diligence – advising on the acquisition and divestment of properties and companies, identifying environment and planning risks and liabilities, potentials and requirements for development and use of the land and strategies for managing risks and liabilities, including for contamination and pollution.