The Joint Regional Planning Panel (JRPP) has granted final approval of a 141-lot subdivision at Iluka.
The panel approved the subdivision “in
principal” at a packed Iluka community hall on Thursday September 19, pending
further analysis of radiation levels across the site.
The panel’s chair, Garry West, said at the
meeting that while the entire site’s background radiation was rated below the
minimum levels, the wording of Clarence Valley Council’s assessment “put us in
a position where we would be at risk [of being taken to court] if we made a
Fellow panel member, Stephen Gow, said the
council’s staff had drawn attention to “enough uncertainty” about the
background radiation – a result of sand mining in the 1970s – “to warrant a
review by the Environment Protection Authority (EPA)”.
In the interim period, Cardno (NSW/ACT) Pty
Ltd conducted a “peer review of the [DA]-submitted
Field Radiation Survey Report prepared by Earth Systems”.
The Cardno review concludes that it
“generally agrees with the ‘Earth Systems’ conclusions [and] that the proposed
development site is suitable for residential land use on the basis of the
surface radiation exposure risk”.
The approval includes
the following conditions to manage the radiation risk:
construction phase environmental management plan and OHS risk assessment
include a requirement for visual identification of black mineral sand materials
unearthed during excavations;
minimisation practices are employed at the site during construction;
deposits of mineral sand (or similar appearances) unearthed during excavation
are examined for radiation activity by a suitably qualified consultant;
sub-soil or excavation materials at the development site are found to be
elevated in levels of radioactivity the materials must be assessed and disposed
of in accordance with NSWEPA guidelines; and,
remediation works are required, a Validation Report prepared by a certified
practitioner must be prepared to demonstrate any post remediation levels of
radiation are compliant with acceptable thresholds for residential use.”
The updated CVC
assessment report states: “Council staff are satisfied that the Earth Systems
Field Radiation Survey and review and certification of the Earth Systems Field
Radiation Survey Report by Cardno determine that the site is suitable for
residential land use subject to additional conditions recommended Cardno review.
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