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Department of the Environment and Heritage Annual Report 2003-04

Department of the Environment and Heritage, 2004
ISSN 1441 9335

Operation of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (continued)

Appendix 1 - Statistics on the Operation of the Act

Protecting environment and heritage

Table 1: Overview    
  2003-04 Total
REFERRALS    
Total referrals received
292
1232
Referrals withdrawn or lapsed before decision
8
21
Referrals decisions made (following reconsiderations)
286
1182
Approval required - controlled actions
54
290
Approval not required - action to be taken in particular manner
38
167
Approval not required - no conditions on action
194
725
Being processed at the end of Financial Year
29
N/A
CONTROLLED ACTIONS    
Total controlled actions (after reconsiderations)
54
290
Assessments completed
27
106
Under bilateral agreements
0
3
Preliminary documentation
21
80
Public environment report
0
1
Environmental impact statement
1
6
Public inquiry
0
0
Accredited assessment
5
16
Approval decisions
27
87
Approved with no conditions
1
8
Approved with conditions
25
77
Approval not granted
1
2
Table 2: Referrals, decisions on controlled actions and reconsideration of decisions
Referrals
Referrals received
292
Deemed referrals
0
Referrals withdrawn or lapsed before decision
8
Referrals decisions made (initial decision, before reconsiderations)  
Approval required - controlled action
57
Approval not required - action to be taken in particular manner
36
Approval not required - not controlled action
193
Total
286
Referrals being processed at 1 July 2003
27
Referrals being processed at 30 June 2004
29
Reconsideration of decisions  
Reconsiderations decisions made in 2003-4  
No change in decision
5
Controlled action decision to not controlled action
2
Controlled action decision to action to be taken in particular manner
6
Not controlled action decision to action to be taken in particular manner
2
Not controlled action decision to controlled action
0
Manner specified decision to not controlled action
0
Total
15
Reconsiderations pending at 30 June 2004
3
Table 3: Referrals and decisions made by jurisdiction (a)
  Referrals received in 2003-04 Decisions made in 2003-04
Approval required Approval not required  
CA(b) PM(c) NCA(d) Total
NSW
57
8
4
52
121
VIC
60
10(e)
8
40
108
QLD
73
13
10
45
141
WA
26
8
1
17
52
SA
17
1
3
11
32
TAS
13
0
5
7
25
NT
9
5
0
4
18
ACT
14
2
0
10
26
Jervis Bay Territory
1
0
0
1
2
Antarctica
1
1
0
0
2
Territories
8
2
1
5
16
Commonwealth Marine Areas
13
4
6
2
25
Total
292
54
38
194
286

(a) The counts of referrals received and of decisions made relate to events occurring in 2003-04. Decisions made may relate to referrals received in earlier years.
(b) CA means that the action is a controlled action.
(c) PM (particular manner) refers to decisions made by the Minister under section 77(3) that an action is not a controlled action because of the particular manner in which it will be taken.
(d) NCA means that the action is not a controlled action.
(e) Includes one withdrawn.

Table 4. Referrals and decisions made by activity category
  Referrals received in 2003-04 Decisions made in 2003-04
Approval Required
Approval not required  
CA(a) PM(b) NCA(c) Total
Agriculture and forestry
5
0
1
4
5
Air and space transport
4
2
1
0
3
Aquaculture
7
3
0
5
8
Communication
6
0
0
7
7
Defence
5
2
0
2
4
Energy generation and supply
20
5
6
14
25
Exploration (mineral, oil, gas)
17
3
9
4
16
Land transport
29
4
5
19
28
Manufacturing
4
0
0
4
4
Mining
30
12(d)
0
17
17
Sale or lease of Commonwealth property
4
1
0
4
5
Science, research and investigations
2
0
1
1
2
Tourism, recreation and conservation management
36
6
4
25
35
Urban and commercial new development
70
10
10
47
67
Urban and commercial redevelopment
11
1
0
9
10
Waste management
12
1
0
10
11
Water management and use
22
3
1
17
21
Water transport
8
1
0
5
6
Grand Total
292
54
38
194
286

(a) CA means that the action is a controlled action.
(b) PM (particular manner) refers to decisions made by the Minister under section 77(3) that an action is not a controlled action because of the particular manner in which it will be taken.
(c) NCA means that the action is not a controlled action.
(d) Includes one withdrawn.

Table 5: Number of matters protected by the EPBC Act for which adverse impacts have been addressed
  Matter protected Nominal controlled action(a) Controlled action
Division 1 Matters of National Environmental Significance    
Section 12 World Heritage values of a World Heritage property
3
6
Section 16 Ecological character of a declared Ramsar Wetland
3
12
Section 18 Listed threatened species or ecological community
32
45
Section 20 Listed migratory species
14
31
Section 21 Nuclear activities with a significant impact on the environment
0
0
Section 23 Commonwealth marine environment
8
7
Division 2
Proposals involving the Commonwealth
Section 26 Commonwealth land
0
3
Section 28 Commonwealth or Commonwealth agency activity
1
4
Total  
61
108

(a) Arising from a non-controlled action decision made if the action is taken in a particular manner

Table 6: Assessments by type of assessment
  Level of assessment decided during 2003-04 Assessments Completed during 2003-04 Under assessment at 30 June 2004
Commonwealth assessments
Preliminary documentation
21
21
12
Public environment report
4
0
10
Environmental impact statement
2
1
9
Public inquiry
0
0
0
State/territory assessments
Bilateral agreement
2
0
6
Accredited assessment
8
5
35
Totals
37
27
72
Table 7: Approvals  
  Number
Approvals(a)
Approved with no conditions
1
Approved with conditions
25
Approval not granted
1
Total decisions
27
Awaiting approval at 30 June 2004
2
Commonwealth awaiting s130(1B) notice from state/territory(a)
14

(a) The statutory timeframe for the approval process commences with the finalisation of an assessment report and, where necessary, the receipt of a notice from the relevant state/territory stating that the impacts of the action (other than those impacts assessed in accordance with the EPBC Act) have been assessed by the state or territory. Therefore for some proposed actions, although the assessment process is complete, the approval process statutory timeframe cannot commence until such notices from the state or territory are received under section 130(1B).

Table 8: Advice provided under Section 160
Authorisation provision Requests for advice Assessment completed Advice provided
Foreign aid program
0
0
0
Aviation airspace management plan
0
0
0
Airport major development plan
11
6
Reg 6.01 - Sea dumping permit
1
0
0
Total
12
6
6

(a) Includes four accredited assessments.

Approvals granted during 2003-04

ADI Limited - Modernisation of Mulwala Munitions Plant, Mulwala, NSW
Brisbane City Council - Sandgate Treatment Plant, Sandgate, QLD
Comalco Smelter Development Pty Ltd and Boyne Smelters Limited (BSL) - Aluminium Smelter Expansion, Gladstone, QLD
Department of Defence - Training Exercise, Shoalwater Bay, QLD
Enertrade - Gas pipeline, Moranbah-Townsville, QLD
Forresters Glen Pty Ltd - Retirement village, Forresters Beach, NSW
G and H Pedel - Residential Building, Kingston, Norfolk Island
Gastech Systems - Tassie Shoal LNG Project, Timor Sea
German Creek East Joint Venture - German Creek Coal Mine Extension, Middlemount, QLD
Gosford City Council - Vegetation Clearing, Umina Beach, NSW
JC, SL, TJ and SN Adam - Clearing Vegetation for Irrigation System, Bringalbert, VIC
New South Wales Land and Housing Corporation - Residential Development, Kellyville, NSW
Newfield Australia (Ashmore Cartier) Pty Ltd - Oil and Gas Wells, Timor Sea
Nexen Petroleum Australia Pty Ltd - Decommissioning of Buffalo Oil Field, Timor Sea
Pacific Reef Fisheries Pty Ltd - Alva Beach Prawn Farm, Alva Beach, QLD
Portman Iron Ore Ltd - Mt Jackson, Windarling and Bungalbin deposits, Koolyanobbing, WA
Qld Department of Main Roads - Widening of Leichhardt Highway, Condamine and The Gums, QLD
Ravensthorpe Nickel Operations Pty Ltd - Ravensthorpe Nickel Project, Ravensthorpe, WA
Rivers and Water Supply Commission - Meander River Dam, Meander, TAS
Riviera Properties Ltd - Riviera Harbours Development, Paynesville, VIC
Vic Roads - Pakenham Bypass, VIC
Warkworth Mining Limited - Extending Warkworth Coal Mine, Warkworth, NSW
Waterways Authority - Sand Reclamation, Towra Point Nature Reserve, Botany Bay, NSW
Wesfarmers Curragh Pty Ltd - Curragh North Coal Mine, Duaringa Shire, QLD
Woodside Energy Ltd - Otway Development, Otway Basin, VIC
Woodside Energy Ltd - Full Field Development, Offshore North West Cape, WA
Yarra Valley Golf Pty Ltd - Henley Golf Course development, Healesville, VIC

Assessments completed during 2003-04

Assessed through environmental impact statement

Woodside Energy Ltd - Otway Development, Otway Basin, VIC

Assessed through preliminary documentation

Axseven Pty Ltd - Black Tiger Prawn Farm, Micalo Island, NSW
Department of Defence - Training Exercise, Shoalwater Bay, QLD
Forrester Residential Developments - Subdivision development, Peregian Beach, QLD
Forresters Glen Pty Ltd - Retirement village, Forresters Beach, NSW
G and H Pedel - Residential Building, Kingston, Norfolk Island
Gastech System - Tassie Shoal LNG Project, Timor Sea
German Creek East Joint Venture - German Creek Coal Mine Extension, Middlemount, QLD
Gosford City Council - Vegetation Clearing, Umina Beach, NSW
Information Gateways Pty Ltd - Rural residential subdivision, Duffys Forest, NSW
JC, SL, TJ and SN Adams - Clearing Vegetation for Irrigation System, Bringalbert, VIC
Newfield Australia (Ashmore Cartier) Pty Ltd - Decommissioning of Challis Oilfield, Timor Sea
Newfield Australia (Ashmore Cartier) Pty Ltd - Oil and Gas Wells, Timor Sea
Nexen Petroleum Australia Pty Ltd - Decommissioning of Buffalo Oil Field, Timor Sea
Provent Property Group Pty Ltd - Residential Subdivision, Duffys Forest, NSW
Riviera Properties Ltd - Riviera Harbours Development, Paynesville, VIC
Santos Lt - Alston-1 petroleum exploration well, Otway Basin
Santos Ltd - Casino Gas Field Development, Otway Basin
Wambo Coal Pty Limited - Wambo Coal Mine Development Project Hunter Valley, NSW
Waterways Authority - Sand Reclamation, Towra Point Nature Reserve, Botany Bay, NSW
Wesfarmers Curragh Pty Ltd - Curragh North Coal Mine, Duaringa Shire, QLD
Yarra Valley Golf Pty Ltd - Henley Golf Course development, Healesville, VIC

Assessed through accredited process

ADI Limited - Modernisation of Mulwala Munitions Plant, Mulwala, NSW
Comalco Smelter Development Pty Ltd and Boyne Smelters Limited (BSL) - Aluminium Smelter Expansion, Gladstone, QLD
Transtate - Port of Airlie Integrated Resort and Marina Development Airlie Beach, QLD
Vic Roads - Pakenham Bypass, VIC
Warkworth Mining Limited - Extending Warkworth Coal Mine, Warkworth, NSW

Assessments in progress at 30 June 2004

Environment Impact Statement

ChevronTexaco Australia - Gorgon Gas Development, Barrow Island, WA
Department of Defence - Headquarters Australian Theatre, Bungendore, NSW
Epic Energy - Darwin to Moomba Gas Pipeline
Phosphate Resources Ltd - East Christmas Island Phosphate Mines, Christmas Island
Powerlink Queensland - High Voltage Electricity Transmission Line Innisfail, QLD
Shell Development (Australia) Pty Ltd - Floating Liquefied Natural Gas facility, Timor Sea
TGS-NOPEC Geophysical Company - 2-D seismic survey Townsville Trough
TransGrid - Electricity Transmission Line, Buronga (NSW) to Monash (SA)
Woodside Energy Limited - Development of Blacktip Gas Field, Joseph Bonaparte Gulf

Public Environment Reports

Cooloola Shire Council - Construction of New Landfill, Toolara, QLD
Coral Coast Marina Development Pty Ltd - Mauds Landing Marina, WA
Cultus Timor Sea Pty Ltd - Audacious Oil Field Standalone Development, Timor Sea
HEZ Pty Ltd - Development of the Hunter Economic Zone Industrial Estate, NSW
Mr K Williams & Cardwell Properties Pty Ltd - Port Hinchinbrook Resort Stage II Cardwell, QLD
Mr Stephen Lane - Public Ferry Hovercraft Operation, Cocos Keeling Island
Phosphate Resources Ltd - Exploration for Mineable Phosphate, Christmas Island
Roc Oil (WA) Pty Limited - platform at the Cliff Head oil field, Dongara, WA
Sudaw Developments Ltd - Nathan Dam, Dawson River, QLD
Waterman Agriculture Pty Ltd - Irrigated cotton development expansion, Pillicawarrina, NSW

Preliminary documentation

Department of Finance and Administration - Divestment of York Park North, Barton, ACT
Department of Infrastructure, Planning and Natural Resources - Pipeline construction and environmental water flow management, Great Darling Anabranch, NSW
Hinchinbrook Shire Council - Sand Bag Groyne construction, Dungeness Point, Lucinda, QLD
Liverpool City Council - Lyn Parade Extension, Prestons, NSW
Palmela Holdings - One Tree Hill Estate - Stage 13, Tamworth, NSW
Phosphate Resources Ltd - Phosphate salvage, transport and processing, Christmas Island
Pioneer Construction Materials Pty Ltd - Sand Quarry Depth Extension, Blue Mountains, NSW
ROCLA LTD - Kurnell Sand Extraction and Backfilling Proposal, Kurnell Peninsula, NSW
Simon Builders Pty Ltd - 'Fairway Waters' Retirement Village, Pakenham, VIC
Southern Hydro Partnership - Rocky Valley Dam Expansion, Falls Creek, VIC
Tidal Energy Australia - Derby Tidal Power Proposal, WA
Woromar Pty Ltd - Rural Sub-division, Bredbo, NSW

Assessments under a bilateral agreement

Hydro Tasmania - Heemskirk Windfarm Development, West Coast, TAS
Hydro Tasmania - Energy generation and supply, Cape Portland Property, TAS, Musselroe Wind Farm
Kemerton Silica Sand Pty Ltd - Silica Sand Mine Expansion, Kemerton, WA
MIM Holdings Limited - McArthur River Mine Expansion, NT
Pacific Hydro Limited - White Rock Ridge Wind Farm, Robbins Island, TAS
Woodside Energy Limited and Alcan Gove Pty Ltd - Trans-territory Gas Pipeline, Wadeye to Gove, NT

Assessments under an Accredited Process

Austeel Pty Ltd - Steel Mill, Newcastle, NSW
Bendigo Mining NL - Carshalton Mine Expansion, Bendigo, VIC
Bulga Coal Management Pty Ltd - Bulga Underground Coal Mine Extension, Singleton, NSW
Burnett Water Pty Ltd - Walla Weir, Bundaberg, QLD
City of Cockburn - Extension of Beeliar Drive, Cockburn, WA
Compass Resources NL - Polymetallic Project, Rum Jungle, NT
Hamilton Island Enterprises Limited - Golf Course Development, Dent Island, QLD
Hazelwood Power - West Mine Development, Latrobe Valley, VIC
Lake Wellington Estates - Wellington Waters Canal Estate, Wellington Lakes, VIC
LG Chem Ltd - Ethylene Di-Chloride plant, Gladstone, QLD
Lonsdale Golf Club Inc - Lonsdale Golf Club Redevelopment, Point Lonsdale, VIC
Mineral Deposits Pty Ltd - Mineral sand mining, McGuires Crossing, NSW
Mineralogy Pty Ltd - Iron Ore Project, Preston, WA
Mount Gibson Mining Limited - Mine and Beneficiation Plant, Mount Gibson, WA
Murray Basin Titanium - Prungle Project Mineral Sand Mine, Euston, NSW
Murray Basin Titanium Pty Ltd - Twelve Mile mineral sand mine, Willandra Lakes, NSW
Newcastle Port Corporation - Hunter River south arm dredging, Newcastle, NSW
Newnes Kaolin Pty Limited - Newnes Kaolin Sandstone Mine Project, Newnes Junction, NSW
NSW Roads and Traffic Authority - Pacific Highway, Upgrade, Bulahdelah, NSW
NSW Roads and Traffic Authority - Road Upgrade, Nowra-Nerriga, NSW
NSW State Government - Hunter River Port and Transport Corridor, Newcastle, NSW
Orange City Council - Resource Reprocessing Facility, Molong, NSW
Pacific Coal Pty Ltd - Open-Cut Coal Mine, Clermont, QLD
Pacific Reef Fisheries Pty Ltd - Proposed Guthalungra Aquaculture Facility, Guthalungra, QLD
PF Formation - Sand Extraction, Maroota, NSW
Port of Melbourne Corporation - Port Phillip Bay Channel Deepening, VIC
RMI Pty Ltd - Irrigated intensive crop production, Macintyre River, NSW
Selwyn Mines Limited - Selwyn Copper-Gold Project, Mt Isa-Carpentaria, QLD
Shute Harbour Management Pty Ltd - Construction of marina, Shute Harbour, QLD
Stockland Development Pty Ltd - Residential and Golf Course Development, Point Lonsdale, VIC
Sun Aqua Pty Ltd - Seacage Snapper Farming, Moreton Bay, QLD
Sydney Ports Corporation - Expansion of Port Botany facilities, NSW
WA Main Roads - Roe Highway Extension, South Perth, WA
Wind Power Pty Ltd - Bald Hills Wind Farm 80 Turbines, Bald Hills, VIC
Wind Power Pty Ltd - Wind Turbines, Swan Bay, VIC

Conserving Biodiversity

Threatened species and ecological communities
Table 9: Processing of nominations and changes to the lists of threatened species, ecological communities and key threatening processes (as at 10 May 2004)(a)
  Species Ecological communities Key threatening processes
New public(b) nominations received under the Act
21
5
2
Nominations on which the Threatened Species Scientific Committee has provided advice to the Minister
56
0
0
Threatened Species Scientific Committee advice to the Minister carried over from 2002-03
6
2
4
Ministerial decisions made on Threatened Species Scientific Committee advice
56
0
4
Number uplisted, new, delisted, rejected
1, 53, 0, 2
0, 0, 0, 0
0, 1, 0, 3
Number of amendments to the list
54
0
1
Total number of listings as at 4 May 2004
1663
29
14
Number of public(b) nominations where an extension to the 12-month timeframe was required(c)
17
2
2
Number of Ministerial decisions made on Threatened Species Scientific Committee Advice where the Minister's 90-day deadline was met
Yes(d)
No
Yes
No
Yes
No
55
1
0
1
4
0

(a) Anomalies in the data can be attributed to the continuing assessment of nominations that occurs across financial years.
(b) Excludes nominations or advices derived from information taken from action plans and consultants reports
(c) Extensions were granted on all nominations that were delayed.
(d) Excludes advices that are currently with the Minister for decision, for which the 90-day deadline has not been exceeded.

Whales and other cetaceans
Table 10: Cetacean permits
Sub-section(a) Applications received Decision made on assessment approach Permits granted
Sub-section 238(3)(a) - specified actions which will contribute significantly to the conservation of cetaceans
0
0
0
Sub-section 238(3)(b) - interference incidental to, and not the purpose of, the taking of the action
10
9
9
Sub-section 238(3)(c) - whale watching
1
0
0
Sub-section 238(3)(d) - export of a personal item
1
1
1
Sub-section 238(3)(e) - import of a personal item
4
4
4
Total
16
14
14

(a) Some applications received were for multiple sub-sections.

Commonwealth and state managed fisheries
Table 11: Assessments of Commonwealth and state managed fisheries completed 2003-04
State/Commonwealth Fishery Ministerial/delegate decision date
NT Finfish Trawl Fishery 18 April 2004
NT NT Demersal Fishery 16 April 2004
VIC Abalone Fishery 21 July 2003
VIC Rock Lobster Fishery 24 March 2004
VIC Giant Crab Fishery 19 March 2004
VIC Pang Quong Aquatics 17 December 2003
VIC Eel Fishery 7 May 2004
WA Pearl Oyster 27 October 2003
WA Shark Bay Snapper 7 June 2004
WA West Coast Deep Sea Crab Fishery 19 March 2004
Commonwealth Northern Prawn Fishery 9 January 2004
Commonwealth Southern and Eastern Scale-fish and Shark Fishery (WTO) 19 December 2003
NSW Estuary Prawn Trawl Fishery 9 December 2003
TAS Giant Crab Fishery (WTO) 24 July 2003
TAS Native Oyster Fishery (WTO) 28 April 2004
SA Rock Lobster 31 October 2003
SA Giant Crab Fishery 19 March 2004
SA Seahorse Marine Services 17 June 2004
SA Abalone - Blacklip and Greenlip 10 June 2004

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