The Environment Defender's Office has brought proceedings against the NSW Environment Protection Authority (EPA) on behalf of the Bushfire Survivors for Climate Action, a community group representing bushfire survivors from the 2019-2020 Australian bushfires. The proceedings seek to force the EPA to establish a climate policy, based on its statutory role which includes a requirement to prepare policies to protect the environment. The group will be arguing that the EPA as lead environment regulator in NSW failed to establish such policies in relation to climate change.

In other jurisdictions, there have been similar proceedings brought by activist groups, seeking to compel government action on climate change. This has found some success, including the Urgenda litigation against the Netherlands government. Similar litigation in Juliana v United States is still ongoing. 

The group bringing the Australian litigation, Bushfire Survivors for Climate Action, includes local small business owners and community members whose businesses and homes were destroyed by bushfires. It is widely agreed that climate change contributes to worse bushfire conditions, which can intensify the scale of bushfires. As such, it is a timely reminder that extreme weather events exacerbated by climate change have significant economic and social impacts on businesses and the community alike.