STRATEGIC MATERIAL AREA
NORTH WEST COASTAL HIGHWAY
Preliminary Environmental Impact Assessment and
CLEARING OF NATIVE VEGETATION
ASSESSMENT OF ASPECTS AND IMPACTS
DECISION TO REFER
ENVIRONMENTAL MANAGEMENT PLAN
Proposed Strategic Material Area on North West Coastal Highway SLK 145.6
Low Impact Environmental Screening Checklist
DEC‟s Threatened Flora and Fauna Database Searches
WAPC‟s Acid Sulfate Soils Mapping
Revegetation Plan for Pastoral Areas
Vegetation Clearing Assessment Report
PRELIMINARY ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT ASSESSMENT AND
STRATEGIC MATERIAL AREA
NORTH WEST COASTAL HIGWHAY 145.6 SLK
Main Roads Gascoyne Region (Main Roads) over a number of years has slowly been exhausting
material stock piles required for road construction and maintenance. Main Roads is currently in the
process of developing a region wide strategic plan to identify potential future material sites. The
identification of material sites will help the region locate required road building material for road
construction and maintenance as well as for use during emergency situations that may arise after
events such as cyclones.
As part of this region wide strategic material plan, Main Roads has identified a potential material
This report details the environmental impact assessment conducted on Strategic Material Area SLK
Describes the significant aspects of the existing project environments; and
Details the primary environmental and social impacts of the proposed works.
As per Main Roads‟ Environmental Assessment and Approval process, the Low Impact
Over the past few years, the number of material stock piles required for much needed road
construction and maintenance works along Main Roads‟ road networks have slowly been
exhausted. Main Roads‟ Gascoyne Region is curre
ntly developing a region wide 20 year strategic
plan that identifies potential future material areas.
Main Roads proposes to construct a strategic material sites along North West Coastal Highway at
This potential material area was identified as part of the region wide strategic material plan and is
building material for construction and maintenance works including emergency activities that may
arise after events such as cyclones.
As this proposed material area make up part of this 20 year strategic plan, the area will be
is required. In this way, only small proportions of the material site will be cleared at any one time,
with revegetation occurring as soon as the cleared areas are no longer required.
Due to the increase in mining tenement applications, Main Roads is seeking to create reserves over
reservation process is to secure areas of importance to Main Roads and to avoid land use conflicts
with future mining leases.
This strategic material area will be used for the maintenance of North West Coastal Highway, with
the aim of providing safe road conditions for the travelling public. Given the anticipated activities
requiring the use of this material area, it is expected that only a minimal amount of the proposed
area identified at each site will need to be cleared for the purpose of material extraction.
The main reason for the identification of such large areas is to allow for material investigation to
minimal clearing and are non-intrusive, resulting in the majority of the sites remaining uncleared.
The strategic material area is located approximately 1km off North West Coastal Highway on the
Strategic material area SLK 145.6 is located within the Eurardy Station, approximately 30km north
Section 19 approvals for material excavation activities, in accordance with the Mining Act 1978.
The access tracks into the pit are in good condition and will easily allow the movement of
It is proposed that clearing endorsements be obtained for the entire strategic material area along
allow Main Roads Gascoyne Region to reserve these areas for the extraction of material outside of
mining tenements and will allow material investigations to be conducted throughout the entire
The location and boundaries of the study area are shown in Figures 1-2.
Figure 1: Location of Proposed Strategic Material Area on North West Coastal Highway
Pit Extension 145.6
Figure 2: Proposed Strategic Material Area on North West Coastal Highway SLK 145.6
A preliminary assessment of the project area and its potential constraints was undertaken by
reviewing a number of government agency managed databases (and consulting where necessary).
The locations of wetlands within the project area was determined using the Commonwealth
Department of the Environmental and Heritage (DEH) mapping tool and Department of
Environment and Conservation (DEC) Geographic Data Atlas mapping tool
EC‟s database was searched for known populations of threatened flora, fauna and Threatened
The need for a local air quality assessment was determined using the criteria outlined in the MRWA
environmental guideline, Air Quality.
Non-indigenous heritage was examined utilising the Australian Heritage Places Inventory
Inventory, refer to Appendix D.
A Search of the Department of
Indigenous Affairs‟ (DIA‟s)
determine whether the project area contains any sites of Aboriginal heritage, refer to Appendix E.
The Commonwealth Department of the Environmental and Heritage (DEH) mapping tool and
Department of Environment and Conservation (DEC) Geographic Data Atlas mapping tool was
used to determine whether the project area supported, or was adjacent to, any significant lakes,
rivers or wetlands or proclaimed areas.
The reserve has been in Main Roads continual control; therefore no further work will be
The Western Australian Planning Commission‟s (WAPC‟c) acid sulfate soils maps were reviewed
and the self assessment done (
) to determine
what level of risk the project area is exposed to, refer to Appendix F.
An onsite investigation of the project areas was undertaken to determine whether there are any
known populations of declared plants or significant weeds in or adjacent to the project area.
The decision whether to refer the project to the Commonwealth‟s DEH was based upon whether
the project would impact upon matters of national significance, e.g. World Heritage properties,
protected wetlands and migratory species, Commonwealth marine areas, threatened species or
communities or nuclear actions (refer to the Commonwealth webpage
for further information and the search tool
), refer to Appendix G.
A site visit was carried out by Robbie Mallard (BGC Contractor) and Crystelle Evangelista
(Environment Officer) on 22/04/08 to examine the general features of the area. The broad
vegetation types in the vicinity of the project area were identified. Other issues that were
considered included topography, the impacts on creek lines, property access and the potential for
noise and vibration impacts (dilapidation).
Site photos were taken and are included in Appendix B.
Strategic Material Area SLK 145.6 occurs within vegetation association No. 365 which is described
as Shrublands; bowgada & jam scrub with scattered York gum & red mallee (Shepherd, et.al.
2002). According to Native Vegetation Association Data (DEC; 2007), this vegetation association
is well represented in the region with 92.97% remaining. The condition of the vegetation is best
described as good to excellent, with small areas being completely degraded due to previous
The following lists of species were observed at the proposed material pits:
Acacia neurophylla var. erugata
Green Mulla Mulla
The proposed material area is part of a 20 year
strategic plan and will be systematically cleared
and revegetated in relatively small areas (e.g. 1 or
2 ha) as material is required.
Total Area of Strategic Material Pit = 67.65 ha
Proposed project area is relatively weed free
Native vegetation describes all indigenous aquatic and terrestrial vegetation (living or
dead). The term does not include vegetation that was intentionally sown, planted or
propagated unless it was required under a statutory condition.
Apart from activities that are exempt under the clearing regulations, such as clearing
will be undertaken using its Statewide Project Purpose Permit.
Assessment against Clearing Principles
In assessing whether the project is likely to have a significant impact on the environment,
the project has been assessed against the DEC‟s 10 principle
s of clearing, refer to
The project will be at variance with the DEC‟s 10 clearing principles (a).
Clearing within an Environmentally
Does the area to be cleared occur within
an ESA where the vegetation is in good
or better condition?
Not relevant to the proposed works. Local air quality assessment is not required for the
project area since:
the predicted traffic flow is less than 15,000 vehicles per day in rural areas; and
residential and other sensitive receptors are not within 200 meters of the road centre
Likely to be a minor issue during earthworks. No sensitive receptors near the work sites.
Mitchell‟s Cockatoo, Western Spiny
-tailed Skink and Lined Skink as possibly occurring
within the project areas. Given the small area of clearing and the mobile nature of the
species found within the area, no impacts are expected
The EPBC Act Protected Matters Report resulted in the Western Spiny-tailed Skink is
nature of the species, works will not impact upon this species.
The proposed material area is part of a 20 year strategic plan and will be
systematically cleared and revegetated in relatively small areas (e.g. 1 or 2 ha) as
material is required;
The projects will involve temporary clearing and so will require a revegetation plan;
The condition of the native vegetation to be cleared is very good to excellent;
The native vegetation to be cleared is well represented regionally;
The native vegetation to be cleared does not occur within an ESA; and
The native vegetation to be cleared will be done so using the purpose permit.
proposal will not have a significant impact upon this environmental aspect. A DEC
database search indicated that priority flora species are located within the vicinity of
Strategic Material Area 145.6 SLK.
A minor flora survey was conducted in July 08 and two priority species were identified
were identified to occur within the project area and the surroundings.
The two priority flora species that were identified were:
Thryptomene ninghanensis (Priority 1)
Philotheca kalbarriensis (Priority 2)
No Declared Rare Flora was recorded to occur within the vicinity of the project area.
No Matters of National Environmental Significance as protected under EPBC Act (1999)
It is proposed that a more extensive targeted flora survey be undertaken to determine the
extent of the priority flora populations within the project area and its surrounds.
environment. It is recommended that extensive weed management strategies are
outlined in the EMP to minimise the introduction of weed species into the project area and
and is above the 26˚ parallel.
Given the location of the proposed project area on the opposite site of the Highway to the
proposed project will not impact on the environmental aspects of the National Park.
A search of the Australian Heritage Places Inventory, Heritage Council of Western
Australia and the Shire of Carnarvon‟s Municipal Heritage Inventory on
has indicated that there are no heritage significance listed sites present in the currently
proposed works areas.
A search of DIA database identified no known sites of Aboriginal heritage significance
within the vicinity of the project areas at SLK 145.6.
Further consultation with the Native Title Claimant Group will be undertaken in order to
minimise impacts to any unregistered heritage sites.
On-site visit confirmed that the proposed works will not disturb or interrupt any natural
drainage and surface run-off patterns.
There are no wetlands within the vicinity of the project areas.
No dewatering nor drainage modifications are required, hence no change to groundwater
level or quality.
There are no sensitive local receivers near the project areas.
The proposed works will result in minor and short-term visual impacts during construction.
Suitable site completion treatments, including rehabilitation, will result in an improvement
in local visual amenity.
Provided traffic management and signage to Main Roads standards is employed, none of
the proposed works present any significant hazards to public safety.
Not relevant to the proposed works.
Given the relatively superficial nature of the required earthworks, there appears to be no
risk of any significant contamination issues.
Given the nature and scale of the project the impact is not relevant.
The WAPC‟s self
investigation is required for the project.
As the proposed works are entirely within the land that has been vested to Main Roads,
no further amendments would be required to the Local Government Planning Scheme or
Given the scale of the project, the low significance of its impacts to the surrounding environment
and the environmental management measures proposed, the project does not require referral to
the WA Environmental Protection Authority or the Commonwealth Department of the Environment
Bridgette Long (Flora)
Kellie Mantle (Fauna)
This section of the report (the EMP) has been developed for the project area following the
completion of the above sections. The main aim of this EMP is to provide a management plan to
assist in minimising the environmental impacts of the activities associated with the proposed works
and identify who is responsible for the implementation of the management strategies.
This EMP will only address the actions already listed as well as any site-specific issues that were
are in addition to the standard specifications used for Category 2 projects. The environmental
management measures/conditions in Main Road‟s Specifications 203, 204, 301, 30
2 and 304 are
still to be followed where applicable.
the timing of the various management actions;
the topic (e.g. vegetation);
the objectives for each area;
the actions that are necessary to minimise the impact;
the responsible party for implementing the action; and
whether the action arose from external advice or is a Main Roads requirement.
Environmental issues specific to the project will be communicated as: