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EPA considers proposal to upgrade Gundagai Road quarry, Bangor

The Environment Protection Authority (EPA) has concluded its assessment of a proposed expansion to Gundagai Road quarry, Bangor, northwest of Lilydale.

D.T.K Logging Pty Ltd proposed to develop two new pits at its Gundagai Road quarry, increasing gravel production from 50,000 cubic metres per year up to 200,000 cubic metres per year.

The Chair of the EPA Board, Warren Jones, said that the Board concluded the quarry could be developed and managed in an environmentally sustainable and acceptable manner, with certain conditions.

"The EPA requires these conditions to be included in any permit subsequently granted by the Launceston City Council," Mr Jones said.

"Various environmental issues were considered in the assessment, particularly the potential for noise nuisance to residents arising from on-site activities and the movement of trucks to and from the site," he said.

"To ensure early morning traffic from the quarry does not disturb residents along the transport route, a restriction was placed on the time that haulage of product may be undertaken from the site.

"Conditions have also been attached to ensure the careful management and monitoring of noise from on-site operations, including a requirement to use a shrouded drill rig and undertake a noise survey when drilling at a higher altitude," said Mr Jones.

Four public representations were received in relation to the permit application, which was submitted to the Board on 29 April 2015. These raised concerns with regard to transport noise and on-site fuel use and storage. Public consultation was open for a 28 day period commencing 9 May 2015.

The proposal was considered by the EPA Board in the context of the sustainable development objectives of the Resource Management and Planning System of Tasmania (RMPS), and in the context of the objectives of the Environmental Management and Pollution Control System (EMPCS) established by the Environmental Management and Pollution Control Act 1994(EMPCA).

The functions of the Board are to administer and enforce the provisions of the Act, and in particular to use its best endeavours to protect the environment of Tasmania, and to further the RMPS and EMPCS objectives.

The Board undertook the assessment of the proposal in accordance with the Environmental Impact Assessment Principles defined in Section 74 of the EMPCA.

The Board’s environmental assessment, including the environmental conditions that must be included in any permit, have been forwarded to the Launceston City Council, for review of planning issues prior to making a decision as to whether a permit is to be granted.

The decision can be viewed on the EPA website at www.epa.tas.gov.au/assessment/completed-assessments