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Media Release
NT EPA recommends approval of Project Sea Dragon Pty Ltd's Core Breeding Centre and Broodstock Maturation Centre

03 Apr 2017

The Northern Territory Environment Protection Authority (NT EPA) has today recommended approval of Project Sea Dragon Pty Ltd’s proposal to build and operate a new Core Breeding Centre (CBC) and Broodstock Maturation Centre (BMC), 42km south-west of Darwin.

Once built, the CBC and BMC will be on the same parcel of unzoned, vacant crown land at Point Ceylon on the southern side of Bynoe Harbour, 22km east of Dundee Beach.

The CBC is for the development, production and selection of high performing prawn stock.

The top performing individual prawns are transferred to the BMC to produce commercial numbers of broodstock for use in a hatchery.

Prawns from the hatchery would then be transported to the proposed grow-out facility at Legune Station that the NT EPA recently recommended for environmental approval.

Once built and operational, the Stage 1 Legune Grow-out Facility will produce approximately 14,000 tonnes of black tiger prawns per annum.

NT EPA Chairman, Dr Paul Vogel, said that following a thorough assessment of the proposal’s potential environmental impacts, the EPA believes the proposal can be managed in an environmentally acceptable manner subject to the imposition of six recommendations.

“Project Sea Dragon will need to address each of these recommendations that include improved water quality management and monitoring,” Dr Vogel said.

“The NT EPA considers that by maintaining marine and estuarine water quality, the Project is unlikely to cause a significant impact to the ecosystem health of Bynoe Harbour, so that populations of threatened and migratory species such as cetaceans, marine turtles and dugong, as well as fish species targeted by recreational fishers can be maintained.

“Other recommendations include public availability of the Environmental Management Plan (EMP) that comprises management strategies for erosion and sediment control, land and soils, acid sulfate soils, vegetation, weeds and pests, fauna, surface and ground water, waste, air and noise, effluent, hazardous materials, traffic, social impact, cultural heritage and decommissioning.

“Furthermore, an independent audit of compliance against the EMP has also been recommended to be conducted at the end of five years after the project commences operations with the results reported to the NT EPA and the NT Department of Primary Industry and Resources.

“The NT EPA has provided Assessment Report 81 to the proponent and Minister for Environment and Natural Resources.”

The Minister will now provide the report to the Minister for Primary Industry and Resources who will decide whether to grant an aquaculture licence for the construction and operation of the CBC and BMC under the Fisheries Act and if so, the conditions that should apply.

Go to www.ntepa.nt.gov.au/environmental-assessments/projects-completed to view the NT EPA’s Assessment Report on Project Sea Dragon Pty Ltd’s Core Breeding Centre and Broodstock Maturation Centre.

Media Contact – Department of Environment and Natural Resources – 0437 915 366