Report of the Third Review of the National Environment Protection Council Acts (Commonwealth State and Territory) December 2012 National Environment Protection Council Response to the Report of the Third Review of the National Protection Council Acts
Tabled paper 599
Tabled Papers for 12th Assembly 2012 - 2016; Tabled Papers; ParliamentNT
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51 National Environment Protection Council NEPC Acts Third Review 2012 on draft measures and impact statements. Recent experience is that it will take at least two years, and often significantly more, between commencement of a review and the resulting National Environment Protection Measure variation. An example of an extended process is the Assessment of Site Contamination National Environment Protection Measure, for which the review commenced in 2004 and was published in 2006. The resulting variation process was initiated in 2007 but has not yet been finalised due to limited resources and the extent of new scientific work completed by the Cooperative Research Centre for Contamination. ASSESSMENT AND REMEDIATION OF THE ENVIRONMENT In this case the long lead time between initiating a National Environment Protection Measure review and subsequent variation of the measure has been a concern for some stakeholders. In the input to the Ramsay Review and the Assessment of Site Contamination National Environment Protection Measure review, stakeholders expressed frustration with the long lead times to update the methodologies included in the National Environment Protection Measure and to reflect significant advances in technology and knowledge in relation to soil and water contamination. These frustrations are likely to have grown over the subsequent five years. 5.4 MAKING, AMENDING AND REVOKING NATIONAL ENVIRONMENT PROTECTION MEASURES The process of revoking a National Environment Protection Measure is the same as the process of making a National Environment Protection Measure, including the requirement to prepare a draft of the proposed revocation and consult on an impact statement. This process is a significant barrier to revoking otherwise redundant regulation. While no National Environment Protection Measure has been revoked to date, the review has found that the Air Toxics and Diesel Vehicles National Environment Protection Measure in particular are close to having achieved their outcomes. Consideration should be given to the review of the Air Toxics and Diesel Vehicle Emissions National Environment Protection Measures to determine whether they are required in a current or amended form to meet future needs or whether revocation should be considered. Note, for example, that the Air Toxics National Environment Protection Measure eight-year review is due in 2012. The Air Toxics National Environment Protection Measure was made in 2004 with a goal to improve the information base regarding ambient air toxics within the Australian environment in order to facilitate the development of standards within eight years. Parts of the Diesel Vehicle Emissions National Environment Protection Measure are focused on addressing older diesel vehicles, which are progressively being retired. New South Wales, for example, in its 201011 report on implementation and effectiveness of the Diesel Vehicle Emissions National Environment Protection Measure notes that diesel vehicles manufactured prior to 1996 (and the introduction of Australian Design Rules with tighter emissions standards for new vehicles for oxides of nitrogen and particles) comprised only 18.3 per cent of the diesel fleet in the state, with a trend of approximately four per cent reduction per year. Further, elements of the Diesel Vehicle Emissions National