ALCOA WAGERUP REFINERY
331. Hon ALISON XAMON to the Minister for Environment:
I ask this question on behalf of Hon
Diane Evers, who is away on urgent parliamentary business.
I refer to Alcoa's Wagerup
(1) Does Alcoa have permission to
undertake any expansion works in 2020 at the Wagerup refinery?
(a) If yes to
(1), can the minister please detail any works approvals that have been granted
under part V of the Environmental Protection Act 1986?
(b) If yes to (1), can the minister
please table a copy of the works approvals granted?
(2) Does Alcoa
have permission to undertake significant maintenance works at its Wagerup
refinery in 2020?
(a) If yes to
(2), can the minister please detail any works approvals that have been granted
under part V of the Environmental Protection Act?
(b) If yes to
(2), can the minister please table a copy of the works approvals granted?
(3) What safeguards are in place to ensure that
expansion works do not occur without appropriate EPA approval?
STEPHEN DAWSON replied:
I thank Hon Diane Evers for some
notice of the question. I will point out that although this question is
labelled parts (1) to (3), it is a seven-part question. I want to draw the
member's attention to that. I have pointed this out a couple of times
The PRESIDENT: You have
indeed, minister. Perhaps that might be conveyed back to the member for future
reference. If a member provides a very long, detailed question, it means that there
might be long, detailed response. That slows down question time and might deny
other members an opportunity for a question if we run out of time.
Hon STEPHEN DAWSON: Thank you, Madam President.
(1) Alcoa has
some of the environmental approvals required for expansion works at the Wagerup
refinery. This includes ministerial
statement 728, which allows for the expansion of the refinery to 4.7 million
tonnes per annum.
Department of Water and Environmental Regulation has not received any
applications under part V of the
Environmental Protection Act 1986 related directly to the expansion approved
under ministerial statement 728. However, on 27 March 2017, a works
approval was issued that allows for the construction and commissioning of an
oxalate bio-removal facility. This facility will improve the management and
treatment of oxalate generated at the premises.
(b) I table a copy
of this works approval.
[See paper 3772.]
DWER has not issued any approvals under part
V of the EP act for significant maintenance works at the premises. Under
section 53(2)(d) of the EP act, some maintenance can be undertaken in certain
circumstances without approval.
(3) The EP act and conditions of approval include a range
of controls to ensure that activities are undertaken in accordance with
the approval. Under section 53 of the EP act, it is an offence if an occupier
of a prescribed premises causes an emission, or alters the nature or volume of
the waste, noise, odour or electromagnetic radiation,
other than in accordance with a works approval or a licence. In addition,
ministerial statement 728 sets out a number
of obligations for Alcoa prior to submitting an application under part V of the
EP act for any expansion works.