Water Journal : Water Journal February 2014
WATER FEBRUARY 2014 34 Feature Article IMPROVING THE SCIENTIFIC BASIS FOR DECISION-MAKING -- BIOREGIONAL ASSESSMENTS One of the major tasks of the IESC is to undertake bioregional assessments of the following areas: 1. Clarence-Moreton 2. Gippsland Basin 3. Lake Eyre Basin 4. Northern Inland Catchments 5. Northern Sydney Basin 6. Southern Sydney Basin. These are identi ed in the map at right. In November 2013, the Commonwealth Department of the Environment announced funding for the assessments through a partnership agreement with the Bureau of Meteorology, Geoscience Australia and the CSIRO. The assessments are to be completed by 30 June 2016 and will provide a scienti c analysis and baseline information on the ecology, hydrology, geology and hydrogeology of these six regions, with the primary focus being on the assessment of the potential direct, indirect and cumulative impacts of CSG and coal mining development on water resources. Also in November 2013, the Victorian and Commonwealth Governments announced a $1.5 million study to benchmark aquifers across Victoria. The study will be a prelude to the Victorian-based bio-regional assessments. THE YEAR AHEAD THE MATURING OF QUEENSLAND CSG PROJECTS AND BENEFICIAL USE OF CSG WATER The CSG industry and its regulation will continue to grow in 2014. Of particular interest will be the delivery of CSG to the Curtis Island liquefaction plants during the commissioning stage of these multi- billion projects. Focusing more closely on water issues, and following Sunwater's Kenya to Chinchilla Weir pipeline opening in 2013, it is likely that there will be more attention paid to the bene cial use of CSG water (i.e. water that is generated from coal seams) as other similar projects are likely to follow in Queensland. WJ THE AUTHORS Rebecca Hoare (email: Rebecca.Hoare@ nortonrosefulbright.com) (Partner, based in Brisbane) was the winner of the 2008 UDIA Women in Development Excellence Award for her achievement in environmental law. Her principal areas of expertise are environmental, climate change, native title, Aboriginal cultural heritage and planning law. Jacinta Studdert (email: Jacinta.Studdert@ nortonrosefulbright.com) (Partner, based in Sydney) advises Government and the private sector on environment and planning issues for a wide range of activities under relevant state and Commonwealth legislation, including the environmental impact assessment, approvals and licences required for new activities such as for CSG, water, electricity and transport infrastructure, environmental risks and compliance issues associated with ongoing operations, incident responses and environmental litigation. Noni Shannon (email: Noni.Shannon@ nortonrosefulbright.com) (Partner, based in Sydney) is a specialist environment and climate change lawyer and was recently ranked as a leading individual lawyer in Environment for Chambers Asia-Paci c. Noni has signi cant experience advising Government and corporations in the water, waste and energy sectors. Wilfred Finn (email: Wilfred.Finn@ nortonrosefulbright.com) (Senior Associate, based in Sydney) specialises in environmental law, with a particular interest in water, electricity, carbon, climate change and renewable energy. Wilf has contributed Postcards to Water Journal over the past year, from his travels to the Blue Nile and the Mekong Delta. Bioregional assessment priority areas.
Water Journal December 2013
Water Journal April 2014