A proposal to extend a gypsum mine at Jurien Bay will be referred to the Environmental Protection Authority for assessment.
Environment Minister Judy Edwards today said she had cleared the way for the assessment after the EPA initially recommended that the proposal was unlikely to be environmentally acceptable.
“After considering appeals on the EPA’s initial finding, and based on the report of the Appeals Convenor, I have determined that the project should be subjected to an environmental assessment that will involve consultation with the community,” Dr Edwards said.
“The EPA has indicated that the project will be assessed through a public environment review.
“This review will be followed by a further appeals period of two weeks, during which time the public can make further submissions.”
The Minister said an EPA recommendation that a project was unlikely to be environmentally acceptable aimed to minimise the likelihood of a proponent undertaking expensive and time-consuming studies.
“It also gives proponents time to revise a proposal,” she said.
“However, this level of assessment can be limited in terms of fairness, particularly where a proponent wishes to have its proposal assessed more fully.”
CSR Ltd has applied to expand its gypsum mining operations in the Beekeepers Nature Reserve east of Jurien Bay. The gypsum mine began in 1993. The proposed extension covers 52ha.
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