The Land and Environment Court in New South Wales, Australia determines planning applications on appeal, when they have been unable to be determined by the local government authority. To assure consistency of decisions, the Court has distilled a number of planning principles. These principles at times become de facto regulatory standards also applied by other approving authorities. This paper combines two quite different discussions. The first is a reflection on the determination of acceptable solar access, or more precisely the concept of ‘effective sunlight’ as defined/constrained by the Principles commonly referred to as the Parsonage case. The second is, in the author's view, a principle long overdue to be articulated by the Court - namely how to deal with the conflict between natural ventilation and mandated acoustic performance.