Essay Competition

NELA 2016 Environmental Law Essay Competition

We are pleased to announce the winners of the 2016 Environmental Law Essay Competition. 

Undergraduate category

Our congratulations are extended to Ms Jocelyn Bosse for her essay on ‘Green Public Procurement in Australia: The implications of accession to the WTO agreement on Government Procurement’.

Postgraduate category

Our congratulations are extended to Mr Russell Schmidt for his essay on ‘Jurisdictional Facts and Environmental Impact Assessment and Approval under the EPBC Act 1999’

Both Jocelyn and Russell have won $1000 and a year's free membership of NELA for their efforts.


NELA 2015 Environmental Law Essay Competition


We are pleased to announce that Ms Katharine Huxley, from the University of New South Wales Law School, is the winner of the 2015 NELA Essay Competition.

Her essay ‘Tuna Ranching and Australia’s Obligations for the Conservation and Sustainable Use of Southern Bluefin Tuna’ impressed the judges with its innovative look at the tuna ranching industry in light of Australia’s international obligations and domestic environmental laws. Ms Huxley has examined how this economically significant industry is regulated. Her essay also offered some suggestions about how stocks of Southern Blue Fine Tuna might be more sustainably managed.

Katharine has won $1000 and a year's free membership of NELA for her efforts.

Our congratulations to Katharine on this achievement.


NELA 2014 Environmental Law Essay Competition


Theme for the 2014 Essay Competition will be "Are we selling our environment short?". Further details of the 2014 competition will be announced in the first few months of next year. Academics please encourage your students to enter.

Please click on the links below for additional information:

2014 NELA Essay Competition Flyer 

2014 NELA Essay Competition Guidelines



NELA 2013 Environmental Law Essay Competition winner announced!


NELA is pleased to announce Ms Madeleine Figg, from the University of Tasmania Law School, is the winner of the 2013 NELA Essay Competition. Her essay on 'Protecting Third Party Rights of Appeal, Protecting the Environment: A Tasmanian Case Study' impressed the judges as a fresh look at the issue, highlighting their importance in achieving better outcomes for the environment even though the majority deal with private interests.

Madeleine has won $1000 and a year's free membership of NELA for her efforts and NELA is liaising with the editor of the prestigious Environment and Planning Law Journal to have the essay published.

The judges also commended Isabelle Whitehead’s essay on the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act's water trigger, which posed the question whether the water trigger was ‘Better Protection or Pure Politics?’

Congratulations to Madeleine and Isabelle!


NELA 2012 Essay Competition


Winner - Meg Good

Ms Meg Good, a PhD Candidate in the Faculty of Law at the University of Tasmania, is the recipient of NELA’s 2012 Environmental Law Essay Competition prize – free membership of NELA for a year and $1,000. Ms Good was announced the winner at the NELA’s national conference in Melbourne on 7 March. An edited version of Ms Good’s essay, ‘The River as a Legal Person: Evaluating the Benefits of Nature Rights Approaches to Environmental Protection in the Context of Water Management in Australia’, will be published in the inaugural e-journal issue of the National Environmental Law Review (NELR).
Ms Anna Davies, also at UTAS, was highly commended for her entry which analysed policy and regulatory responses to the alleged adverse health effects of wind farms in Australia.

Ms Anna Davies, University of NSW, also submitted an outstanding entry. Ms Davies’ essay discussed the need for climate change adaptation policies to include a planned retreat from the shoreline, and associated law and policy challenges. These entries will also be published in the next NELR.

The competition judging panel comprised Dr Hanna Jaireth, national editor of the NELR; Wayne Gumley, Senior Lecturer, Business Law and Taxation, Monash University, and Greg McIntyre SC, Chair of the Environment and Planning Law Group in the Law Council’s Legal Practice Section, and a former NELA President.

From left: Hanna Jaireth, Meg Good and Wayne Gumley at the award presentation at NELA’s ‘Low Carbon Future’ National Conference in Melbourne earlier this month.

NELA 2011 Essay Prize Distribution


Winner - Kate Browne

We are delighted to announce that the winner of the 2011 NELA Environmental Law Essay Competition is Kate Browne from Victoria with her Essay entitled Climate Change and Statelessness The Disappearance of Small Island States. Kate’s essay will be published in the upcoming issue of the National Environmental Law Review (NELR).

Congratulations to all the entrants, the calibre of entries was of a very high standard and a number of the highly commended entries will also be published in upcoming issues of the NELR.

NELA’s Wayne Gumley presented Kate Browne with the NELA essay prize on 16 May 2012. The prize is a cheque for $1,000 and free membership of NELA for a year. Wayne, who chaired the selection panel, said Kate’s essay was chosen from a strong field of candidates. Her essay, on ‘Climate change and statelessness: the disappearance of small island states’, was published in the National Environmental Law Review.

Kate told us afterwards that she’ll save the prize money for a trip to Italy next year. Well done Kate!