Department of the Environment

Archived media releases and speeches

The Hon. Tony Burke MP

Minister for Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities

Sustainable development for the Perth and Peel regions

Media release
18 August 2011

The Australian and Western Australian governments have agreed on a process to provide long‑term certainty and cut red tape in the Perth and Peel regions, Environment and Communities Minister Tony Burke announced today.

“This strategic assessment of the Swan Coastal Plain under national environment law will enable sustainable communities to accommodate Perth’s growing population, while safeguarding our environment,” Mr Burke said.

“Once the Strategic Assessment is complete business will no longer have to go through a year long process to conduct an Environmental Impact Statement.

“The strategic assessment effectively establishes an environmental docking station that developers can plug directly into without having to start the approval process from scratch each time.

“Making sure that development is well planned, well designed, and in the right place offers great benefits to both the environment and the community.

“This agreement will enable both governments to map out long-term development, and conservation and heritage priorities in the Perth and Peel regions.

“It will identify areas suitable for future development, and secure those needing protection for their environmental and heritage values.”

No further federal assessment will be needed for individual projects once the Western Australian Government’s plan for the metropolitan region is assessed and endorsed under national environment law, provided the projects are done in accordance with the endorsed plan.

“This process will reduce red tape, and provide long-term certainty to the community and developers for sustainable urban development and improved housing supply.

“This is a sensible and flexible approach to urban planning. It’s a logical way of balancing the development needs of a growing city with environmental protection.”

Mr Burke said the Gillard Government had also committed $29.2 million which would support strategic assessments of seven growth and coastal regions.

“The Sustainable Regional Development initiative will continue to improve environmental outcomes while also giving certainty to state and local governments and the private sector to invest in housing, infrastructure and resource development.”

For more information go to: www.environment.gov.au/epbc/assessments/strategic.html.