The Federal and South Australian Governments have released a draft bilateral agreement for approvals under national environment law for public comment.
Federal Environment Minister Greg Hunt said that he is committed to reducing the regulatory burden on business by streamlining the environmental approvals process and is working with State and Territory Governments to develop a ‘One-Stop Shop’ for environmental approvals.
“The Australian and South Australian Governments are making considerable progress in putting the One-Stop Shop in place for South Australia under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999.
“We recently signed a new assessment bilateral agreement and we are now working towards an agreement for environmental approvals.”
The Australian and South Australian Governments have worked together on a rigorous analysis of South Australia’s minerals and energy resources legislation, policies and processes, to ensure that the approval bilateral agreement will meet the Australian Government’s high standards for environmental protection.
The draft agreement will create a single approval process that satisfies both Commonwealth and State or Territory approval requirements.
This agreement provides the broadest scope for accreditation of processes under the Mining Act 1971 and the Petroleum and Geothermal Energy Act 2000 possible under national environmental law.
“This means that more businesses will be able to have their project assessed and approved under a single process,” said Minister Hunt.
The introduction of the One-Stop Shop reform will save Australian businesses around $420 million every year.
The period for public comment is open until 5pm AEDT on Monday 2nd February 2015.
Further information can be found at http://www.environment.gov.au/topics/environment-protection/environment-assessments/bilateral-agreements