Environment Minister Judy Edwards has extended an environmental assessment of a trial tuna farm to greater public scrutiny.
The trial, proposed by MG Kailis Tuna Pty Ltd, involves a 150 tonne tuna farm in the Remark Island group of the Archipelago of the Recherche off Esperance.
The Environmental Protection Authority had said the trial would require a public environmental review with a four week public comment period.
However, after considering the advice of the Appeals Convenor, who received 10 appeals in respect to the EPA decision, Dr Edwards has doubled the period of public consultation to eight weeks.
“A public environmental review is an appropriate level of assessment for this project,” the Minister said.
“However, it is important that given the level of community interest and the nature of the environment of the waters off Esperance, the assessment progress is rigorous and that the public has ample opportunity for comment.
“The archipelago is an area of considerable natural beauty and environmental value. It is an area the State Government has identified as being included in the State’s formal marine conservation reserve system as a marine park.
“This is in line with the Government’s commitment to protecting the local lifestyle and environmental values.”
The Minister also has directed that the proponent prepare a monitoring and management program for the two-year trial.
“It is imperative that environmental risks posed by the trial are subjected to a comprehensive and open impact assessment process and that the company demonstrates it has measures in place so that the trial farm’s operations are consistent with maintaining the area’s environmental values,” Dr Edwards said.
Minister's office: 9220 5050