The Environment Protection Act 1970 (the Act) establishes the powers, duties and functions of the Environment Protection Authority. These include the administration of the Act and any regulations and orders made pursuant to it, recommending State Environment Protection Policies (SEPPs) and Industrial Waste Management Policies (IWMPs) to the Governor in Council, issuing works approvals, licences, permits, pollution abatement notices and implementing National Environment Protection Measures (NEPMs).
Under the Act, we have an EPA Corporate Licence which includes the legally enforceable performance conditions with which our business activities must comply. EPA Licences focus on areas where the licensee may have a significant impact on the environment, in Goulburn Valley Water's case our Licence specifically relates to our 26 Wastewater Management Facilities. The general condition of a Licence is that waste must not be discharged beyond the boundaries of the premises, except in accordance with this licence or under the Act .
Under the Act, the EPA has statutory functions that Goulburn Valley Water must adhere to including:
We are committed to protecting the environment and have developed initiatives to demonstrate compliance with our Licence including the implementation of a certified ISO 14001:2015 Environmental Management System, annual environmental objectives and targets and, we provide an Annual Performance Statement to the EPA which details our compliance with the Licence conditions.
The Act is available online at the Victorian Law Today Library. It is currently under review and the amended Act will commence on 1 July 2020. More information about the Act and EPA Licensing can be found at www.epa.vic.gov.au.