EPA grants works approval for Bolwarra abalone farm

Environment Protection Authority Victoria (EPA) has approved a Works Approval for Yumbah Nyamat to construct a new 1,000 tonne per annum abalone farm at Dutton’s Way, Bolwarra, near Portland.

The decision means Yumbah has EPA approval to develop the abalone farm noting it also needs to satisfy conditions of a planning permission issued to the company by Glenelg Shire Council. It must also comply with a permit under the Marine and Coastal Act Consent issued to the company in February by the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning.

The Works Approval sets out stringent conditions for the construction phase to ensure the plant meets all environmental performance standards on an ongoing basis. During commissioning of the farm, EPA will also require the company to provide proof of performance testing. Independent verification of construction and proof of performance testing will also be required.

Yumbah will also need to obtain an Aquaculture Licence from the Victorian Fisheries Authority and an EPA Licence to operate the farm once constructed.

The farm will include a hatchery, nursery and grow out tanks, pumping seawater to the land-based farm, before discharging treated water to the bay through a series of outlet pipelines.

EPA Director of Development Assessments Tim Faragher said EPA’s decision follows many months of consultation and a thorough assessment of the company’s application.

“Among other issues, we considered the proposed wastewater treatment system and potential effects of the wastewater discharge, noise, odour, groundwater, the principles of the Environment Protection Act 1970, biosecurity, environmental management and potential risks to human health and the environment through assessment of risks to beneficial uses,” Mr Faragher said.

“EPA is satisfied the farm can be built in a way that meets stringent environmental standards and will not cause detrimental environmental impacts on the health of the local community.” 

EPA’s detailed assessment report, a summary report and the works approval document is available at https://engage.vic.gov.au/epa-works-approvals/yumbah-aquaculture-works-approval-application

If members of the community object to the issuing of the works approval or its conditions, they can have the decision reviewed by applying in writing within 21 days of the date of issue to:

Registrar, Planning and Environment Division

Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT)

7th Floor, 55 King Street, Melbourne

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