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Hazelwood Mine and Power Station rehabilitation

The Victorian Government is working to set in place strong plans to ensure the site is restored to a safe and stable landform.

Rehabilitation and demolition plans will continue to be developed by the site operator, in conjunction with the Victorian Government, after the site ceases operation.

The immediate focus for the Victorian Government is to ensure initial post-closure works on site maintain the safety of the Hazelwood mine pit and the power station.

The mine

Operators are required to restore land according to an approved rehabilitation plan once mining ceases. The site operator must submit a final rehabilitation plan that includes concepts for the final end use of the mine site and proposals for progressive rehabilitation, stabilisation, revegetation and landscaping.

Overseeing rehabilitation

The Victorian Government is introducing new controls for mine rehabilitation.

On 22 March 2017 a Bill was introduced into Parliament that will see a Latrobe Valley Mine Rehabilitation Commissioner appointed to provide independent advice directly to the government on mine rehabilitation issues. Additionally, the Latrobe Valley Mine Rehabilitation Advisory Committee has commenced its work to ensure the community is heard on rehabilitation outcomes.

Both the Mine Rehabilitation Commissioner and the Rehabilitation Advisory Committee will help shape the Latrobe Valley Regional Rehabilitation Strategy, which will address rehabilitation issues for all the Latrobe Valley coal mines.   

Victoria’s mining regulator, Earth Resources Regulation, will assess the rehabilitation and associated work plans to ensure compliance with the Mineral Resources (Sustainable Development) Act 1990 and Regulations.

Rehabilitation timelines

The exact time it will take to complete rehabilitation work depends on the intended rehabilitation outcome for the site, which will be set out in the detailed rehabilitation plan. Rehabilitation work is likely to continue for at least 10 years.

Having your say

The operator will be required to consult with the community during the development of Hazelwood’s mine rehabilitation plan. Keep up to date by visiting the website links below.

The power station

The mining operator is responsible for remediating the power station, including the preparation of a plan to mitigate impacts before its closure.

Remediation work will need to be staged and well planned in conjunction with the community and government regulators. Remediation activities will take at least two years.

As details become available prior to each stage of the process, the Environment Protection Authority Victoria (EPA) will ensure that acceptable risk controls are included in the plans, and will employ the appropriate statutory tools to enforce this.

Overseeing decommissioning and remediation

The EPA licenses environmental discharges from the Hazelwood Power Station. The EPA will regulate the environmental aspects of decommissioning, remediation and any ongoing water discharges from the mine.

The operator must comply with the Environment Protection Act 1970 and EPA-issued statutory notices that set remediation expectations.

This will be undertaken using the existing EPA licence for the site and assessment of compliance against this, as well as via specific notices that may be issued where they are appropriate. You can find out more about the Environmental Protection Authority’s involvement at the site here

Overseeing occupational health and safety

Worksafe Victoria will oversee health and safety on the site.

More information

Environment Protection Authority Victoria:  www.epa.vic.gov.au

WorkSafe Victoria: www.worksafe.vic.gov.au

Earth Resources Regulation: 

http://earthresources.vic.gov.au/earth-resources/hazelwood