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EPA to be congratulated

I have just been made aware that a Notice of Licence Variation for Boral’s Medway Mine has recently been released as a public document by the Environmental Protection Authority (EPA). 

Ironically this comes shortly before a Notice of Motion I have submitted to council, will be debated this Wednesday evening. 

The motion will call upon the EPA, the Department of Resources and Energy and Water NSW to consider a condition on Boral to construct a waste water treatment facility to protect the Wingecarribee Rivers aquatic ecosystems, and Sydney’s Drinking Water Catchment and to invite Dr Wright back to council to discuss other issues of potential pollution, including spills from sewage Treatment Plants. 

I have been told that the EPA has issued Boral with a licence variation on September 27.

The notice is almost identical to the previous licence, however pages 17 and 18 contain ‘Special Conditions’ where they are required to ‘Develop an Action Plan to - Prevent, Control, Abate, Mitigate Pollution to Wingecarribee River’. 

It seems that my motion is very timely indeed. 

If my councillor colleagues support this motion it appears we will add weight to the EPA’s requirement for Boral to treat the pollution.

 In conversation with water catchment experts, I have been told they have never seen the EPA respond in such a decisive fashion.

After serving three years as a Stakeholder representative on the Board of the SCA, I am acutely aware of how sensitive the ecosystem of our Drinking Water Catchment is. 

I would like to personally applaud the EPA for this decisive action.

I have also been told that in developing a Pollution Mitigation Plan, Boral must consult with the community and other Stakeholders.

It seems this motion now becomes even more important, and if carried will provide an important role in the consultative process to protect the Wingecarribee River.

For those who wish to examine the EPAs licence Variation, it is available at  http://www.epa.nsw.gov.au/prpoeoapp/Detail.aspx?id=608&option=licence&range=POEO%20licence&searchrange=

Clr Larry Whipper

Roberston

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