First published 16 September 2020

The Rocky Hill Mine case was a landmark legal action for Australia. The Rocky Hill Mine was the first coal mine to be rejected by an Australian Court on the basis of climate change. The latest edition of our QUT Global Law, Science and Technology Seminar Series – ‘Litigating Science: Climate Change and the Rocky Hill Mine Case’ discusses the case with Elaine Johnson, head of the legal team representing the local community.

Hosted by QUT Law’s Professor Amanda Kennedy and presented by Elaine Johnson of the Environmental Defenders Office on 28 August, the seminar discussed the minutia of the case and how the Court recognised that although climate change is a global problem, the solution to climate change will come by mitigating emissions at multiple sources. The Court further emphasised that as a result, the responsibility to take climate impacts into account comes at all different levels.

Elaine’s insights into the case are a first-hand account of her experiences as the head of the legal team that represented the plaintiffs: the local community in the Gloucester region of NSW.