Brendan Tobin


Qualifications: LLM, BCom/LLB



Brendan is an experienced major projects lawyer working in the area of planning, environment, mining and renewable energy. Brendan has acted for a range of resource clients, advising them on matters ranging from approvals for greenfield projects, climate change litigation, mining lease processes, native title and water licensing.

Brendan’s practice covers energy and resources projects in both New South Wales and Queensland where he is currently acting in groundbreaking climate change litigation.


  • Advising Centennial Coal Limited on ongoing mining and planning matters on a retainer basis including in relation to processes for renewable energy and State Significant Development Applications, Environmental Protection Licence variations.
  • Acting for Waratah Coal in Queensland Land Court proceedings for a mining objection hearing including in relation to groundbreaking climate change litigation.
  • Acting for Dorado Property on biodiversity credit agreements.
  • Acting for Port of Newcastle Operations in relation to contamination.
  • Acting for the Daracon Group in Class 4 enforcement Land and Environment proceedings brought by a Local Government authority seeking to enforce planning laws against a quarry operator.
  • Drafting and negotiating a range of voluntary planning agreements for local and regional development.
  • Acting for a range of clients on various property matters including acquisition and sale, redevelopment and subdivision of properties.
  • Giving advice on a range of planning and environmental matters including seniors housing permissibility and probity.
  • Acting in Class 1 merits appeal Land and Environment Court for a range of clients seeking planning approval for development ranging from a $90 million subdivision through to local alterations and additions.
  • Experienced native title lawyer acting in respect to future act agreements, extinguishment report and native title proceedings.
  • Incident management and response to safety and environmental matters including with respect to the application of the Asbestos Waste Strategy 2018 - 2022.
  • Advising on water entitlements, trading and licensing.
  • Advising the developer with water supply authority including advising on powers and obligations of licenced operators under the Water Industry Competition Act 2006 (NSW) and their operating licence, and negotiation of a detailed terms sheet for the provision of water supply and sewage services and the supply of recycled water to the subdivision.
  • Advising on matters relating to funding of growth infrastructure including Hunter Water's contributions deed, planning agreements and State infrastructure contributions.
  • Advising on Hunter Water requirements for the subdivision of land including the process and legal aspects of Notice of Requirements Letter and granting a compliance certificate under section 50 Hunter Water Act 1991.
  • Advising on the application of Part 5 Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979 (NSW) to exempt development works and the requirements for a Review of Environmental Factors.
  • Advising Hunter Botanical Gardens Trust on its proposed biodiversity agreement with Hunter Water Corporation.
  • Advising on the new Biodiversity Conservation Act 2016 (NSW) requirements including offset and Biodiversity Stewardship Agreements.
  • Advising regarding referrals and requirements for controlled activity approvals under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Act 1999 (Cth).
  • Acting in Federal Court proceedings relating to the Plains Clans of the Wonnarua People native title claim.
  • Advising on water licensing and approvals under the Water Management 2000.

Awards and recognition

The Legal 500 Asia Pacific 2022
Recommended – Environment and planning
Best Lawyers in Australia 2017-2023
Recognised – Planning & Environment Law

Professional Membership

  • Member, Law Society of NSW

Latest thinking

Environment | 7 Apr 2022

When is a noise limit not a noise limit?

In the landmark ruling of Uren v Bald Hills Wind Farm Pty Ltd [2022] VSC 145, the Victorian Supreme Court has held that noise emitted from the Bald Hills Wind Farm constituted a nuisance to its neighbours.