Moratorium on seabed mining in the NT’s coastal waters extended

29 May 2018

NT Government: Acting Minister for Environment and Natural Resources, Eva Lawler confirmed today that a moratorium on seabed mining in the NT’s coastal waters had been extended.

“The NT’s coastal and marine environments are naturally and culturally significant. They play a key role in the economic and recreational life of the Territory and are home to important ecosystems and abundant sea life,” Ms Lawler said.

“Seabed mining is a highly complex activity and currently there is limited information available on the impacts of seabed mining on the environment and how to manage those impacts appropriately.

“It is important that should there be any future development of our marine environment, it is sustainable and ensures its ongoing health. There is much more scientific analysis that needs to be done to fully understand the potential risks and impacts of seabed mining before it can be considered by Government.

“As such, the moratorium will remain in place until March 2021 to allow the Department of Environment and Natural Resources to undertake a comprehensive review of the actual or potential impacts of seabed mining on NT coastal waters.

“The Aboriginal Areas Protection Authority will provide advice on mechanisms to protect sacred sites.”

Ms Lawler said the Department aimed to submit a draft report to the NT Environment Protection Authority for its consideration in the second half of 2018.

The community will then be consulted on the draft before a final report is provided to the NT Government for its consideration.

“The Territory Government understands how valuable the Territory’s marine and coastal environments are and we want to ensure that any future activity is well managed and sustainable. We are already delivering on our election promise to develop a Coastal and Marine Management Strategy for the NT,” Ms Lawler said.

“Extensive consultation has taken place with the community and discussions are ongoing with partners and stakeholders. The Strategy will provide a critical framework for how all stakeholders work together to manage and protect the coastal and marine environments over the next ten years.

“The Territory Labor Government is also developing a comprehensive Plan of Management for Limmen Bight Marine Park. This will be done in conjunction with traditional owners, Aboriginal rangers and other key stakeholders and will safeguard the Limmen Bight through sustainable fisheries management, banning seabed mining and developing tourism and local job opportunities.

“We need to make sure we are taking a considered and well-informed approach to any future development in our marine environments.”

 

--ENDS--

 

Source:  Northern Territory Government - www.newsroom.nt.gov.au

Contact:  Media contact: Trish Grimshaw 0401 119 242

External Links:  N/A

Recent news by:  Northern Territory Government

 

ONLINE PROFILE