In early November, the Commonwealth Department of Infrastructure invited public comment on proposed Australia-wide “drone delivery guidelines” it has been quietly developing with industry stakeholders.

A slick new website – – boasts of the supposed benefits of delivery drones. It claims they will create jobs, provide cost-efficiency and be environmentally sustainable.

The draft guidelines focus on minimal technical considerations concerning land-use planning (suggesting no special accommodations need to be made for drones), and safety and noise issues. These issues matter, but they entirely overlook the stakes of permitting delivery drones to dominate our skies.