Kangaroo Island Plantation Timbers has lodged its Draft Environmental Impact Statement for the proposed Kangaroo Island Seaport, with the State Government.
The Draft EIS has been prepared by Adelaide-based environmental consultants Environmental Projects, supported by a large study team of engineers, scientists and technical experts, in response to guidelines issued by the SA Development Assessment Commission.
KIPT Managing Director John Sergeant said the Draft EIS and its associated studies demonstrated that the KI Seaport could be built and operated in a way that protected the environment and water quality, while providing significant social and economic advantages to South Australia, and to the Kangaroo Island community in particular.
The KI Seaport, once built, is expected to unlock more than 250 full-time jobs, most of them on Kangaroo Island, and to inject more than $50 million a year into the South Australian economy. The project has not changed in scope or scale since it was originally declared a Major Development in February 2017, although the design of the jetty structure has been modified to reduce the environmental impact of the proposed seaport.
The Minister for Planning will advise when the Draft EIS is available for public consultation and whether any further information or changes are required before this happens. Until then, the Draft EIS is treated as commercial-in-confidence. KIPT hopes the public consultation period will be completed before Christmas 2018, but recognises that this is a matter for the Minister.
Formal submissions made during the public consultation will be considered and answered in a follow-up Response Document. The Draft EIS and the Response Document will together form the final EIS to be lodged with State and Commonwealth governments for their decision.
Mr Sergeant said the lodgement represented a critical milestone for KIPT.
“We have invested substantial time, effort and money to ensure that we are lodging a comprehensive Draft EIS. We believe that our proposal is submitted in a form that provides government with all the information it requires. We look forward to seeing the Island community, and the State of South Australia, benefiting as soon as possible from the production and sale of sustainably grown plantation timber on Kangaroo Island.
“We also anticipate advantages to other sectors of the Island’s economy, as a new freight access option is opened.
“At the same time, we recognise that a transformative project such as this raises questions and doubts. We look forward to presenting the facts. We welcome the opportunity to engage with the community and we re-commit ourselves to listening … and addressing any concerns wherever we can.”