Human health and wellbeing are fundamentally linked to the state of the environment – from the air we breathe, to the water we drink or swim in, to the land we grow our food and build our homes on, and through our experiences of the sounds and smells around us.

Land use planning can help ensure that land is used and developed safely, in a way that protects the environment and human health.

Land use planning is one of the earliest points available in the planning process to address risks of harm to the environment or human health prior to the commencement of an activity.

Environmental and human health risks that may be addressed through land use planning include:

  • Air quality
  • Dust
  • Odour
  • Noise
  • Waste
  • Water quality
  • Wastewater
  • Land and groundwater contamination
  • Biological risks such as Q Fever

How is human health considered in land use planning?

The Victoria Planning Provisions ensure human health is a consideration in planning decisions. For details on relevant provisions see the list of planning policy references at Environment protection and land use planning.

The Environment Protection Act 2017 considers harm to human health as including amenity impacts. Factors such as the frequency, intensity and duration of amenity impacts can impact upon the significance of human health impacts.

For further information on assessing human health impacts refer to Environmental Public Health on the EPA website.

Page last updated: 01/07/21