The Environment Protection Authority (EPA) has concluded its assessment of a proposal by Nyrstar Hobart Pty Ltd for construction and operation of a new electrolysis plant (cellhouse) at its existing metallurgical site in Lutana. The proposal was referred to the Board in October 2021.
The new cellhouse will be constructed adjacent to the existing cellhouse and will replace the existing plant once commissioned. The proposal only relates to the electrolysis stage of existing Nyrstar Hobart operations and does not alter upstream or downstream processes and related process inputs and outputs.
The Deputy Chair of the EPA Board, Ms Belinda Hazell, said that the Board concluded the proposed development could be managed in an environmentally sustainable and acceptable manner, with certain conditions. The Board requires these conditions to be included in any permit subsequently granted by the Glenorchy City Council.
“Various environmental issues were considered by the Board in its assessment, particularly noise and air emissions from the new facility. Although modelling indicated the new facility will improve air emissions from the site, conditions have been imposed to monitor emissions and verify any changes. Noise limits have also been imposed" Ms Hazell said.
Two representations were received in relation to the permit application. The matters raised in these representations were addressed in the Board's permit conditions. Public consultation was open for 28 days from 15 January 2022.
The proposal was considered by the 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 (the EMPC Act).
The functions of the Board are to administer and enforce the provisions of the EMPC Act, to further the RMPS and EMPCS objectives and, in particular, to use its best endeavours to protect the environment of Tasmania.
The Board undertook the assessment of the proposal in accordance with the Environmental Impact Assessment Principles defined in Section 74 of the Act.
The Board's environmental assessment report, including the environmental conditions, has been issued to Nyrstar Hobart Pty Ltd and Glenorchy City Council.
The decision by the EPA Board in relation to Construction and Operation of New Electrolysis Plant (Cell House), Nyrstar Hobart has been published.