ACF investigations

Exposing environmental crime, corruption, and negligence.

Our mission

The ACF Investigations Unit is a watchdog dedicated to protecting nature and our climate by holding the government and private sector to account.

We investigate unethical, illegal, polluting and damaging behaviour, and advocate for policy change.

Logging in Toolangi State Forest, VIC. Photo: Dale Cochrane 

Our Investigations Unit is 100% funded by community donations. Donate now to ensure our work exposing the truth can continue.

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How we work

We follow tip-offs from the community, monitor irreplaceable habitats and high-risk pollution zones, and keep a watchful eye on the systems and decisions we expect to protect nature, climate and our democracy.

We look at aerial imagery, analyse public data, and obtain documents through targeted Freedom of Information requests. We speak with communities and scientists, go spotlighting with field experts, fly drones to gather evidence and spot threatened animals with infrared.

Once we’ve finished investigating a case, we assess the most impactful way to respond – including legal action, publicity, or advocacy.

Gathering evidence of greater gliders at Shallow Crossing, NSW. Photo: Stuart Cohen/Bottlebrush Media. 

Our impact

2020

We made over 150 FOI requests to increase transparency of decisions that threaten nature, water, air and our democracy. Analysis in our Access denied report shows that our FOI requests are being increasingly delayed and denied.

2021

We uncovered plans by Woodside to dump an 83-metre long steel and plastic mooring next to the Ningaloo World Heritage Area. After ACF’s investigation and more than 8,000 public submissions from the ACF community, Woodside withdrew its plan to dump the mooring next to the reef.

2023

2,100 volunteers joined us in our first crowdsourced investigation to scan 3,681,000 hectares of at-risk native habitat for land clearing. It helped uncover that critical habitat for the endangered regent honeyeater was being destroyed near Armidale, and help us take action.

Send a tip-off

Got a tip about an environmental issue? Contact our investigations unit.

• Email us at [email protected] 

• Mail us at PO Box 2699, Canberra ACT 2601

• Or text us on 0455 299 923 via Signal or Whatsapp

News and reports

The latest in investigations. 

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Submission to the Australian government whistleblowing reforms

22 December 23

ACF’s Investigation Unit turns five

07 December 23

ACF takes up the fight against potent methane emissions

08 August 23

Lives at ‘steak’: critical habitat cleared for beef production in NSW

29 June 23

The results of ACF Investigates

05 April 23

Join a team of community investigators with ACF Investigates

20 February 23

ACF Investigates: Habitat Destruction

20 February 23
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Double standard

22 November 22

Explained: What is the safeguard mechanism?

21 October 22

Safeguard mechanism reform needed urgently

04 October 22