Energy and natural resources

Environment and resource management

Statutory rights


Robert acts in all fields of environmental law relevant to energy and natural resource development (incl. land, water, air, soil, minerals, plants, and animals).

He has an established track record of achieving favourable outcomes for development projects (e.g. legislative, planning, and approval). He is equally skilled in the protection and preservation of existing public or private interests in natural resources.

Robert is often briefed at the early planning stage of a project to assist with the preparation of strategies tailored to specific outcomes. He enjoys collaborating with clients, other counsel, and experts in the design and execution of those strategies.

He is experienced in other fields of law connected to resource development including director liability (company law), force de jure and liability (insurance), performance bonds (finance), and non-compliance (criminal).

Robert’s advocacy services include negotiation, briefing witnesses, planning and development hearings, defence of prosecutions, and appellate proceedings.

Selected highlights

  • Federated Farmers of New Zealand v Northland Regional Council [2016] NZHC 2036, (2016) 20 ELRNZ 538 (HC).
  • Federated Farmers of New Zealand v Northland Regional Council [2015] NZEnvC 89, (2015) 18 ELRNZ 603, [2015] NZRMA 217 (EC).
  • NZ Forest Research Institute Ltd v Bay of Plenty Regional Council [2013] NZEnvC 298, [2014] NZRMA 181 (EC).
  • Securing approval for the establishment and operation of an alluvial gold mine north of Roxburgh, Central Otago, for Kokiri Lime Company Limited (August 2016).
  • Advising the Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment on the “Stockton revisited: The mine and the regulatory minefield” (October 2009).