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Media Release
Senator the Hon Robert Hill
Leader of the Government in the Senate
Minister for the Environment

Final Guidelines for Environmental Impact Statement on Proposed Sydney Second Airport


6 November 1996
(150/96)

Federal Environment Minister Robert Hill has endorsed the guidelines for the environmental impact statement (EIS) for the proposed development of a second major international/domestic Sydney Airport.

The guidelines provide the terms of reference for the EIS to be prepared by the Department of Transport and Regional Development (DTRD) for the new airport proposed for either Badgerys Creek or Holsworthy. They require a comprehensive examination of relevant environmental issues in the EIS.

The guidelines have been finalised taking into account the views on the two siting options expressed by the public and interested parties, including the NSW Government. The proponent (DTRD) will need to consider alternative airport layouts, including different runway locations and alignments to minimise environmental impact.

Public meetings were conducted by the Federal Environment Department to obtain views on the guidelines. Over 50 000 written submissions were received from an estimated 12 000 individuals and groups. The guidelines will be sent to all those who made a submission. The text is also available on the Internet.

In finalising the guidelines my department has considered the large number of views expressed during consultations. The final guidelines have been significantly modified in response to these views.

DTRD will prepare an EIS for the construction and operation of an airport capable of handling up to 360 000 aircraft and 30 million passenger movements every year.

The guidelines for the EIS are required under the Commonwealth Environment Protection (Impact of Proposals) Act 1974. The Act ensures that matters affecting the environment to a significant extent are fully examined and taken into account in decisions by the Commonwealth Government.

When prepared, the draft EIS will be released for public comment and will be subjected to analysis by an independent environmental auditor. The final EIS will then be subject to further scrutiny by both the auditor and my department.

The guidelines are available by phoning 1800 811 109 or on the Internet at : http://www.erin.gov.au/portfolio/epa/eianet/notifications.html

Media contacts : Minister's office Matt Brown (06) 277 7640

Environment Department Jim Cannon (06) 274 1076

Commonwealth of Australia