Environmental assessment under the EPBC Act
Department of the Environment and Heritage, February 2006
ISBN 0 642 55253 3
About the assessment report
The Department of Fisheries, Western Australia (DFWA) submitted a document for assessment under Parts 13 and 13A of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (EPBC Act) in July 2005. The document, Final Application to the Australian Government Department of Environment and Heritage on the South Coast Trawl Fishery (the submission), was released for a thirty-day public comment period that expired on 29 August 2005. No public comments were received. The submission reported on the South Coast Trawl Fishery (SCTF) against the Australian Government Guidelines for the Ecologically Sustainable Management of Fisheries. The Australian Government Department of the Environment and Heritage (DEH) assessed the SCTF based on this submission and, in December 2005, declared the fishery an approved Wildlife Trade Operation (WTO) for a period of three months. This short term WTO resulted from DEH's concern at the lack of formal management arrangements for the SCTF. While the current WTO allows export from the SCTF, it expires on 28 February 2006, and a new decision under Part 13A of the EPBC Act is required to enable export of product from the fishery to continue past this date.
In response to DEH's concerns about the lack of formal management arrangements for the SCTF, DFWA released a document Management of the Proposed South Coast Trawl Fishery - a Discussion Paper (the Discussion Paper) for public comment in August 2005. The Discussion Paper proposed a number of management arrangements for the SCTF, which have now been forwarded to the Western Australian Minister for Fisheries for approval. This assessment considers the original submission, associated documents, and the management commitments outlined in the Discussion Paper.