During the 12 month transition period, regulators may allow companies to finalise and submit work, which is consistent with the original NEPM and already substantially progressed, for auditor/third party review or to submit final reports directly to the relevant jurisdiction where no auditor/third party reviewer is involved based on appropriate justification.
Examples of where a site assessment would be considered substantially progressed include:
- a contract has been awarded and the Sampling and Analysis Quality Plan has been finalised and the field work has commenced or is imminent at the time of registration of the amendment; or
- the site assessment report has been submitted for auditor review.
In addition, for some newly included contaminants, some laboratory methods may not be commonly available to undertake appropriate assessment immediately following the declaration into law of the amendment. The 12 month transition period will allow laboratories time to modify relevant procedures.
With these practicalities in mind, this means that the states and territories of Australia expect that all site contamination assessment reports dated from 16 May 2014 will be consistent with the amended NEPM unless alternative arrangements have been agreed with the relevant regulator.
Table 1 Summary of jurisdiction arrangements for the implementation of the ASC NEPM 1999 as amended in 2013
|Jurisdiction||Proposed implementation arrangements|
|Commonwealth||Implement the revised guidelines administratively under the National Environment Protection Council Act 1994.|
|Australian Capital Territory||Update the Contaminated Sites Environment Protection Policy, 2009 (ACT EPA) to reflect the amended NEPM|
|New South Wales||The Amendment will be approved under s.105 of the Contaminated Land Management Act 1997. The EPA has a duty to take the Amendment into consideration when relevant and site audits have to be carried out in accordance with the Amendment, once approved.|
|Northern Territory||No legislative action is required as the NEPM is captured under the Waste Management and Pollution Control Act.|
|Queensland||No legislative action is required as the NEPM is applied through the Department of Environment and Heritage Protection's published guidance material. The guidance material will be updated to reflect the NEPM as amended from time to time.|
|South Australia||Seek the NEPM as amended to be made an Environment Protection Policy (EPP) under the Environment Protection Act 1993.
Revise relevant EPA guidelines.
|Tasmania||No legislative action is required as the NEPM (and any amendment to it) is taken to be a state policy under the State Policies and Projects Act 1993.|
|Victoria||Amend State Environment Protection Policy (Prevention and Management of Contamination of Land) 2002 to incorporate the NEPM amendment.
Review other legislative instruments as appropriate.
|Western Australia||Update the WA DEC Contaminated Management Series of guidelines and/or gazette the NEPM schedules as guidelines under s.97 of the Contaminated Sites Act 2003.|
Please contact the relevant jurisdictional agency regarding detailed implementation information for this NEPM. Decisions about the way in which NEPMs are implemented are made by each jurisdiction individually.