Stronger environmental protection for the Pilbara
23 June 2017
Joint media release with the Minister for Environment and Energy, the Hon Josh Frydenberg MP
A new strategic assessment program agreed between the Turnbull Government and BHP will protect the unique environment of the Pilbara and support environmentally sustainable development of iron ore mines.
The program locks in strong environmental standards and protection measures for the remarkable environment of the Pilbara.
The outcome will be that BHP will apply the strongest environmental standards to all new mining operations in the Pilbara.
The company will consult the community on new activities, invest to safeguard our nationally protected species and report publicly on their environmental performance.
The program will be subject to regulatory oversight by the Federal Government, with regular review and approval required, and a limit on environmental impacts.
The approval provides BHP with certainty for their ongoing iron ore business, which has a workforce of about 16,000 people. The next new mining project could be a multi-billion dollar investment that, if approved, could create several thousand construction jobs.
Investment by BHP in conservation measures across the Pilbara will benefit nationally protected species. This gives the community confidence that environmental standards must be applied to all future mining activity.
This is a great outcome for nationally protected species including the northern quoll, the Pilbara leaf nosed bat and the Pilbara olive python.
BHP should be congratulated for investing in this work over several years to deliver better outcomes for these important species.
The Government has approved the program under Australia’s national environment law, the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999.
For further information see http://www.environment.gov.au/protection/assessments/strategic
Media contacts: Minister Canavan's office 02 6277 7180