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Edithvale and Bonbeach Environment Effects Statement (EES)

Edithvale wetlands

The level crossings at Edithvale and Bonbeach are set to be removed by lowering the rail line into a trench. Because of their proximity to the internationally significant Edithvale-Seaford Wetlands, these projects were subject to an Environment Effects Statement (EES) process.

This EES was a detailed study into the potential impacts of the Edithvale and Bonbeach level crossings projects.

It described potential effects of the Edithvale and Bonbeach level crossing removal projects on the environment and recommended ways to avoid, minimise or manage these impacts.

The EES process was finalised in December 2018, with an approval decision from the Australian Government’s Minister for the Environment on matters relevant to the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999.

The EES focused on three key areas that could be impacted by the projects:

Key findings

The EES found that trenches are feasible at both Edithvale and Bonbeach. The EES found any potential impacts from the projects on the environment are considered to be minor and will be monitored throughout construction and for several years after completion.

Wetlands

The EES found that the level crossing works would not impact the Edithvale-Seaford Wetlands. This is because groundwater changes resulting from the project are highly unlikely to occur closer than one kilometre from the Edithvale wetlands.

View Edithvale-Seadford Wetlands fact sheet view wetlands and vegetation video

Groundwater levels

Part of the EES focused on how to manage potential impacts the projects may have on groundwater levels and the ecosystems that depend on it.

It found that any potential changes to groundwater levels at Edithvale can be effectively managed through our design technique.

At Bonbeach, changes to groundwater levels are relatively minor and unlikely to have a significant impact.

View Groundwater levels fact sheet view groundwater levels video

Groundwater quality

The level crossing removal projects are designed to minimise any potential effects on groundwater quality.

In Edithvale, our design technique means that the groundwater quality will not be impacted.

At Bonbeach, the EES found that the risk of impacts to groundwater quality was extremely low.

View the Groundwater quality fact sheet view groundwater quality video

Video

Public Hearings

The independent Inquiry, appointed to provide expert advice to the Minister for Planning, considered the Edithvale and Bonbeach Environmental Effects Statement and all public submissions received during seven days of public hearings in June 2018.

Almost 250 public submissions on the EES and proposed design were received and will help shape the outcomes of the project.

All information presented at the public hearings, including audio recordings of the hearings is available at Engage Victoria.

Next steps

Planning for the removal of the Edithvale and Bonbeach level crossings will continue, incorporating the EES findings.

More information

The EES process was managed by the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP).

For any inquiries about the overall EES process, please contact the DELWP at environment.assessment@delwp.vic.gov.au or call (03) 8392 5503.

If you have questions about the Panel report itself please contact Planning Panels Victoria at: planning.panels@delwp.vic.gov.au or call (03) 8392 5121.

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