Environmental Defenders Office (EDO) is the largest environmental legal centre in the Australia-Pacific, dedicated to protecting our climate, communities and shared environment by providing access to justice, running groundbreaking litigation and leading law reform advocacy.
We are an accredited community legal service and a non-government, not-for-profit organisation that uses the law to protect and defend Australia’s wildlife, people and places.
Since 1985, we’ve offered expert legal advice to thousands of ordinary people and community groups, taken bold and groundbreaking environmental cases to court and fought for laws that better protect our land, air and water. Our track record of legal victories spans more than three decades.
We work all around the country, with farmers, conservation groups, Traditional Owners, and people from all walks of life and all manner of places – from the heart of the outback to the centres of our biggest cities.
There are eight Environmental Defenders Offices across Australia, which are uniting to form a single, united national organisation in 2019.
What we do
EDO’s team of expert lawyers run powerful legal cases on behalf of clients that build stronger environmental laws, as well as helping everyday Australians protect the places they love by offering free, or low-cost, legal advice about community environmental matters.
Many of our services are targeted at rural and regional communities where the threats of climate change and environmental mismanagement are most keenly felt.
The work we do includes:
- Taking landmark environmental cases to the courts on behalf of clients;
- Holding government and industry to account over matters like development, pollution and environmental mismanagement;
- Representing community groups in public interest litigation;
- Designing and advocating for stronger state and federal environmental laws;
- Offering expert legal and scientific advice to people and communities;
- Providing workshops, factsheets, handbooks, and other legal tools to help all Australians understand the law and participate in legal processes;
- Training the next generation of environmental lawyers to protect people and our most precious places.
EDO are the experts in environmental law. As well as our skilled team of lawyers, we have access to a network of scientists and other professionals who are able to provide advice on the technical aspects of environmental issues we work on.
We have extensive experience in issues including:
- Climate change and energy;
- Biodiversity and threatened species protection;
- Aboriginal culture and heritage and access to country;
- Water management;
- Urban planning and heritage protection;
- Mining and coal seam gas;
- Forestry and native vegetation management;
- Protected areas.
EDO is proud to be an accredited member of the National Association of Community Legal Centres.
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EDO recognises the traditional owners and custodians of the land, seas and rivers of Australia. We pay our respects to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander elders past and present, and aspire to learn from traditional knowledge and customs so that, together, we can protect our environment and cultural heritage through law.