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projects were carefully assessed for their potential impacts on the Outstanding Universal Value of the Great Barrier Reef including on water quality. Strict conditions have been placed on all these projects to ensure that any impacts are avoided, mitigated or offset. A net benefit test has been applied in setting conditions on each project in order to reverse the water quality decline identified in the Great Barrier Reef region strategic assessment, by requiring substantial offset packages. For example, with the Abbot Point dredging and spoil disposal project, in order to address the cumulative impacts of dredging on water quality, the company must offset the amount of fine sediments released into the marine environment and available for re-suspension by 150 per cent. This will be done by funding onshore activities to reduce the amount of fine sediment entering the Great Barrier Reef lagoon from catchment areas. The result will be a long term net reduction of fine sediments entering the Great Barrier Reef from land based sources, well beyond the life of this project. A similar 150 per cent offset condition has been imposed on the dredging component of the Curtis Island LNG development. The comprehensive set of conditions put in place to protect water quality is outlined below. North Queensland Bulk Ports Corporation Limited - Abbot Point Terminal 0, 2 & 3 Capital Dredging Under Labor, at least 38 million cubic metres of dredging was proposed for Abbot Point. Under these approvals, dredging is limited to a total volume of up to 3 million cubic metres. No more than 1.3 million cubic metres of sediment can be dredged or disposed of in a year, unless the proponent can demonstrate that increased dredging will not compromise water quality. Dredging and disposal activities can only be undertaken between 1 March and 30 June each year to protect water quality during critical times for seagrass growth and coral spawning. The proponent must prepare and submit to the Minister a number of plans prior to the commencement of dredging and disposal activities: Dredging And Spoil Disposal Management Plan – this plan requires early warning trigger levels for water quality and ecosystem health to address possible impacts from turbidity, sediment deposition and impacts on seagrass. Abbot Point Ecosystem Research And Monitoring Program – this program requires monitoring of water quality and ecosystem health within a Great Barrier Reef water quality monitoring framework. It requires the validation of hydrodynamic modelling, and the development of measures to monitor water quality (including where sediment travels from the dredging and disposal site) and seagrass health and recovery. Disposal Site Analysis Plan – this plan requires the identification of alternative disposal sites for analysis and must outline a process for public consultation. Disposal will only be allowed at an alternative site if it would have the equivalent or lesser impacts than the site
identified in the Public Environment Report. Any alternative dredge disposal site must be approved by the Minister. Offsets Plan – this plan requires the proponent to address the potential loss of seagrass and outline the net benefit outcome to the World Heritage Area. It will address impacts on water quality by requiring an offset for the fine sediments resulting from the dredging and dredge spoil disposal activities and available for re-suspension by an equivalent 150% reduction in the load of fine sediments entering the marine environment from the Burdekin and Don catchments.
A dredging Technical Advice Panel will be formed to provide independent advice to North Queensland Bulk Ports on the development, endorsement, implementation and review for adaptive management purposes of the dredging and spoil disposal management plan, Abbot Point ecosystem research and monitoring program and the offsets plan. Adani T0 coal terminal The proponent must prepare and submit to the Minister a number of plans prior to the commencement of the construction of the coal terminal and offshore jetty/trestles: Terrestrial Management Plan - for the construction and operational phases of the project which must, among other things, address water quality impacts, including from runoff from coal stockpiles and stormwater runoff. This includes actions to protect the Caley Valley Wetland from potential downstream impacts. Marine and Shipping Management Plan - to cover both the construction and operation of the project. The scope of this plan covers all aspects of shipping, including loading and ballast water management to control marine pest risks, with Adani being required to reflect best practice mitigation and management measures to ensure protection of marine species and their habitat.
Arrow Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) Facility The approval holder must develop a Dredge Management Plan and a Shipping Activity Management Plan, to address water quality impacts from dredging and shipping. Trigger levels for early warning of water quality impacts and for ceasing dredging must be included in the Dredge Management Plan. The Shipping Activity Management Plan must include measures to address turbidity from ship propeller and ship wakes and other potential water quality impacts from shipping. To ensure a net environmental benefit outcome, the proponent must offset any dredging impacts above water quality triggers identified in the Dredge Management Plan. This requires the proponent to invest in activities in the Great Barrier Reef catchment that will achieve an equivalent 150% reduction in the load of fine sediments entering the marine environment and available for re-suspension. This will ensure the project’s contribution to cumulative impacts is addressed. Arrow Gas Transmission Pipeline All project activities will take place above the low tide mark, and only minor land-based disturbance is expected from the project. The pipeline will be tunnelled under Port Curtis to reduce impacts to the marine environment as far as possible. Water quality impacts (e.g. sedimentation and erosion) are expected to be minor and will be managed through state controls and conditions. 2