Scheme credit auctions

The NSW Environment Protection Authority auctions 200 Hunter River Salinity Trading Scheme (HRSTS) credits every two years. The first auction was held in April 2004.

The next credit auction will be held on Thursday 26 May 2022. To participate in the auction, complete the bidder registration form and submit it to the EPA by 16 May 2022.

The scheme was introduced to reduce salinity in the Hunter River. It ensures that Hunter River salinity targets are not exceeded due to saline discharges from facilities with environment protection licences. Participants may only discharge when the river is in 'high' or 'flood' flow and they must hold enough credits (in accordance with the scheme rules) to cover the amount of saline water they wish to discharge. If a participant wishes to discharge more than their credit holding permits, they must acquire credits from others who do not need to discharge into a particular discharge event.

The scheme was made permanent on 1 December 2002, via the Protection of the Environment Operations (Hunter River Salinity Trading Scheme) Regulation 2002. Under this Regulation, the NSW Government must auction 200 new salinity credits every two years to replace those that are about to expire. Auctions ensure that new participants are given access to credits and provide an ongoing incentive for industry to invest in strategies that reduce their need to discharge saline water. Auction proceeds are used to help pay for the operating costs of the scheme, particularly environmental and compliance monitoring costs.

Hunter River Salinity Scheme Credit Auction Information (PDF 852KB) explains the auction processes and rules.

Credit auction reports

Register as a bidder

By participating in this auction, I agree that:

  1. I cannot discuss bids, bidding strategies or bid limits with any other bidder in the auction or facilitate discussions that could reveal this information to parties external to the bidding group. To do so would represent illegal conduct. If evidence of collusive activity is discovered, the EPA has the right to suspend or withdraw permits awarded through this auction process and/or pursue legal action.
  2. the bids I make in this auction are final and enforceable. By placing these bids, the organisation I represent is bound to pay the EPA the total value of the credits that I win, as determined by the auction rules. If my organisation fails to submit payment for the bids won, I understand the EPA is able to undertake legal action to recover funds owing.
  3. based on the information I provide in this form; the EPA may require a bank guarantee(s) and/or bond if it deems necessary to ensure my bids can be honoured.
Your details





Individual / Organisation










Please note that a person may only bid on behalf of one organisation.








NOTE: If you do not hold an environment protection licence you must provide the EPA with the original of a bank guarantee to the value of your intended maximum bid(s) in support of your registration form. Bank guarantees are to made out to the EPA and have an expiry date of 30 days after the credit auction date.


Page last updated