Message from the CEO
Welcome to the May edition of EPA Connect. We are playing an ongoing role in investigating and monitoring the fish deaths event at Menindee and over the past months we have been progressing work through our Climate Change Action Plan and the EPA's key focus on plastics waste.
I had the opportunity in April to travel to Barkindji Country in the state’s far west with our Premier Chris Minns and new Environment Minister Penny Sharpe to see first-hand the challenges facing communities following the fish kill in waters at Menindee.
The EPA is investigating the cause of the concerning fish kill that commenced in mid-March. This investigation is a top priority for the EPA, and all available resources, including specialist investigators, are actively working on it.
The EPA also established a dedicated team to monitor water quality and conduct sampling on the Darling Barka River ahead of a forecast cold snap that may lead to more fish deaths
The monitoring and sampling are being conducted with assistance from the Department of Planning and Environment’s Science, Economics and Insights Division (DPE Science). The sampling results from testing are available to the community on the EPA’s website.
Joining Minister Sharpe on the ground in Menindee, I could see her passion for an integrated environmental management approach and commitment to meaningful community engagement as we work to solve critical natural resource issues like this in the future.
The EPA looks forward to working with Minister Sharpe to support the next chapter for sustainability in NSW. We have a shared commitment to improving the EPA’s effectiveness and delivering on our commitment to protect what matters most – today, and for future generations.
Over the past months we have been progressing work through our Climate Change Action Plan which was released in January. You can see an overview of here and the Policy and Plan are available on our website. We will shortly be reaching out to licensees to conduct a survey to understand the climate actions already being taken to mitigate emissions and reduce climate risks.
The EPA’s key focus on plastics waste continues, as we progress to the next tranche of problematic plastic items to be addressed. We are currently engaging with stakeholders and will be seeking feedback from the broader community with a discussion paper on this expected to be out in July. For each problematic item a range of options including phase outs, design standards and product stewardship are being explored.
Finally, we are always looking for the best ways to communicate with you and this EPA Connect newsletter is just one way for us to do this. Please take a few minutes to provide your feedback on the newsletter via the short survey in this edition.
Thank you to all for your work towards a better environment.
Chief Executive Officer
NSW Environment Protection authority (EPA)