EPA calls for input on GHG guidelines

28th July 2022 By: Esmarie Iannucci - Creamer Media Senior Deputy Editor: Australasia

PERTH (miningweekly.com) – The Western Australian Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) has called for feedback on its greenhouse-gas (GHG) guidelines.

The EPA this week said that it was reviewing its Environmental Factor Guideline – Greenhouse Gas Emissions, which was introduced in April 2020, and aimed at communicating how GHG emissions are considered by the EPA in the environmental impact assessment process.

Since the original guideline was published, the EPA has assessed proposals from some of the state’s biggest emitters and recommended conditions requiring proponents to reach net zero by 2050 or sooner.

EPA chairperson Professor Matthew Tonts said ensuring that the guidance was contemporised meant the EPA was better equipped to make recommendations that adequately reflected climate risks in Western Australia.

Tonts said the contemporised GHG guidance included the EPA’s view that proponents should achieve deep and substantial reductions by 2030 and net-zero emissions through a straight-line trajectory from 2030 to 2050.

“The EPA acknowledges the need for deep and substantial emission reductions this decade consistent with the Paris Agreement and the conclusions of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change,” he said.

“When the EPA considers this guideline during an assessment, proponents will be required to develop a GHG management plan which commits to delivering regular reductions in GHG emissions over the life of the proposal.”

Generally, the EPA will consider GHG emissions from a proposal when they are likely to exceed 100 000 t carbon dioxide equivalent of Scope 1 or Scope 2 emissions a year.

Tonts said eight weeks of consultation would provide valuable feedback on the draft guidance.

Environmental groups, industry, business and members of the public had until September 21 to provide feedback.