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Right now, AGL’s proposed ‘Crib Point Gas Import Terminal’ project for Westernport Bay is going through the environmental assessment process, after which it will need the green light from the Planning Minister Richard Wynne for the project to proceed.
AGL’s preliminary studies of the environmental impacts for this project have shown significant gaps and flaws in assessing the risks associated with the release of chlorine and other pollutants into the surrounding seawater – up to 450 million litres per day. It is unclear how thoroughly this will be assessed through the current environmental assessment process.
There is a regulation which forbids Victoria’s environment watchdog, the Environment Protection Agency, from granting licences for dumping wastewater in high conservation areas like Westernport Bay. Legal advice obtained by Environment Victoria says that AGL’s terminal should not be allowed because of this very reason.
AGL was so concerned about this regulation they tried to change it last year in an attempt to remove barriers to their project.
Please email the Planning Minister Richard Wynne to make sure he thoroughly applies this regulation when assessing the impacts of AGL’s project.
A permit to discharge wastewaters into high conservation areas such as our precious Westernport Bay should not happen and could be devastating.
Dear Minister Wynne,
I am concerned about AGL’s proposed ‘Crib Point Gas Import Terminal’ project that could spell disaster for Westernport Bay, and I write to you specifically regarding the Environmental Effects Statement (EES) process.
Westernport Bay is a highly valued and internationally recognized Ramsar wetland, which if the project gets the green light, could see the discharge of up to 450 million litres of cold chlorinated seawater into Westernport Bay, and the production of other pollutants distributed around the Bay.
I understand that the impacts of chlorine release is within the scope of the EES, but to what extent is unclear. AGL’s preliminary referral studies showed significant gaps and flaws, in relation to this risk, along with and many others such as Bay wide impacts from the project.
I am concerned given AGL’s attempt to shirk their responsibilities, when they tried to weaken Victoria’s environmental laws, the State Environment Protection Policy (SEPP) Waters, to clear the path for their project.
As you are aware, the State Environment Protection Policy (SEPP) Waters sets an extremely high bar for ‘wastewater discharges’ into aquatic environments of high conservation value such as Westernport Bay. Dumping this wastewater into Westernport Bay will only damage a very important ecosystem and should not occur.
I ask that you apply EPA’s regulation when assessing this project on a high value and sensitive ecosystem, as a permit to discharge wastewaters into high conservation areas such as our precious Westernport Bay could be devastating.