Securing extractive resources for future growth

By on April 7, 2020

The Victorian Government has been progressing the Strategic Extractive Resource Area (SERA) pilot project – a flagship initiative of the Helping Victoria Grow: Extractive Resources Strategy.

The SERA pilot project aims to introduce new planning policies and controls in defined areas within Wyndham and South Gippsland municipalities to provide greater visibility, recognition and protection of known or potential strategic resources.

Specially-tailored controls are proposed to afford greater protection to existing quarries in proposed SERA locations as well as to secure strategic extractive resources for the future.

The SERA pilot project is a joint initiative between the Department of Jobs, Precincts and Regions and the Department of Environment, Land and Water, in partnership with the two councils. It is overseen by the industry-government Extractives Strategy Taskforce, which includes representation from the CMPA and the CCAA.

If successful, the SERA pilot project will help ensure that Victoria has the resources available to meet forecast demand, which is expected to more than double 2015 levels by 2050 due to population growth, substantial infrastructure development, and private sector development.

The SERA pilot project is an important initiative for industry and for local communities. It will allow extractive industry to operate and grow in these locations while minimising impacts upon local community and environmental values.

The pilot project commenced with the Wyndham and South Gippsland councils following a call for expression of interest from critical extractive resources supply councils identified in the Demand and Supply study 2015-2050. The Victorian Government plans to roll out more SERAs in other key areas, to continue securing future supplies of much needed rock, sand and gravel.

Targeted industry consultation has already occurred with quarry operators in both pilot SERAs, which has given the project team a better understanding of key issues and future opportunities for extractive industry in the areas.

The Victorian Government will be providing an opportunity for the extractives industry and the community to review the SERA pilot project report and to provide feedback on the SERA planning policies and boundaries. At the time of publishing this edition of Sand and Stone, the timing and approach for the public consultation process on the SERA proposals was being reviewed in light of the unfolding COVID- 19 emergency.

Information about engagement activities for the SERA pilot project will be made available on the Engage Victoria website once the consultation period commences. In the meantime you can visit www.earthresources.vic.gov.au/projects/strategic-extractive-resource-areas/ or email the Extractive Resources Strategy Team at extractiveresources.strategy@ecodev.vic.gov.au

John Krbaleski
Chair Extractives Strategy Taskforce
Department of Jobs, Precincts and Regions

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