The federal government’s commitment of $128.5 million to modernise the operation of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act (EPBC Act) is welcome boost for more timely project approvals and better environmental outcomes.
Single touch approvals via the integration of Commonwealth and state processes and well-designed landscape-scale approaches will support more timely and coordinated decision-making for crucial resources projects.
These changes will help provide greater certainty for businesses to invest in regional Australia, supporting local communities, jobs and furthering sustainable development.
Additional funding for administration of the Act, compliance and building the environmental knowledge base will also provide greater confidence for all parties.
The establishment of an advisory committee to provide expert industry advice will improve understanding of industry, including minerals development within EPBC Act processes.
The minerals industry has long-advocated a coordinated approach to environmental assessments and approval processes, founded in reliable data, effective administration, modern systems and processes.