Announcement by Roger Jaensch, Minister for Environment
The Tasmanian Government has announced the structural and organisational separation of the Environment Protection Authority (EPA) from the Department of Primary Industries, Parks, Water, and Environment (DPIPWE) into a standalone independent State Authority.
The EPA will remain as Tasmania's independent environmental assessment and regulatory body, but the changes will provide additional clarity on the independent role of the EPA, while also broadening the EPA's responsibility for environmental assessments in Tasmania. Further, with legislative changes, it is expected that the separation will also increase the integrity of environmental assessments in the future.
The separation will result in the Policy and Government-led functions remaining with DPIPWE, while the EPA retains the statutory assessment and regulation functions - clearly delineating these roles.
Importantly, as part of the reforms and in working to meet recommendation 2 of the PESRAC Final Report, we will be providing additional resources to the EPA.
Legislative amendments to the Environmental Management and Pollution Control Act 1994 will be required to give effect to the change, and these amendments will be subject to public consultation before being tabled in Parliament.
Mr Wes Ford, current Director of the EPA will remain in the role, with a new position within DPIPWE to be created to manage the non-statutory environmental policy.
The new arrangement is expected to commence as of December 1 this year.
We are proud of the work undertaken by the independent EPA and I look forward to undertaking this significant and important reform.