Application of the Dredge Guideline will assist dredging proponents and licensees in meeting their general environmental duty under section 25 of the Environment Protection Act 1993, by demonstrating that all reasonable and practicable measures have been undertaken to minimise the potential for environmental harm.
It provides a broad overview on the EPA's role in the development assessment and licensing of dredging activities and what dredging proponents need to do to meet their legislative requirements.
This will be achieved by:
- Highlighting legislation and regulation relevant to dredging including EPA referrals under the Planning, Development and Infrastructure Act 2016 (PDI Act) and licensing requirements under the EP Act.
- Identifying potential environmental impacts associated with dredging activities and EPA’s expectations on the environmental outcomes that must be achieved.
- Specifying what information will be required by the EPA to assess the environmental risk of proposed dredge campaigns referred under the PDI Act and for the EPA licensing process.
- Providing advice on the development of dredge management plans (DMP), monitoring programs and sediment analysis plans.
This guideline applies to all dredge campaigns. It does not provide specific technical guidance that differentiates between types of dredge equipment or the nature of the environment where dredging is proposed. Instead it aims to be outcome based enabling proponents and licensees to potentially adopt their own methodologies and still meet EPA legislative requirements.
The guideline applies to all operational aspects of dredging including the deployment and operation of machinery during the dredging campaign, and the management of spoil removed from the dredge site. However this does not remove the need for proponents to utilise existing knowledge and experience from the dredging industry and consider best available technology that is economically achievable (BAT). A fact sheet has been developed which summarises the purpose and benefits of the guideline.
The EPA will be reviewing the implementation of the guideline during the first 12 months to identify any gaps or opportunities for improvement. If you have any feedback on the content or structure of the guideline, please do not hesitate to email your feedback (mark subject 'Dredge guideline feedback').