Due to erosion at Okines Beach in Lewisham, the Tasmania Parks and Wildlife Service are investigating mitigation measures and have referred potential options for assessment under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (EPBC Act) due to known presence of a threatened Red Handfish population approximately 2km away and others approximately 5km away.
Some parts of Okines Beach dunes and foreshore have been impacted by natural coastal erosion processes and storm events. Potential measures under investigation include sand scraping to replenish and stabilise the sand dunes and/or construction of a rock seawall.
The matter has been referred to the EPBC Act as it is a matter of national environmental significance due to the potential impact on the Red Handfish threatened species and ecological communities.
The Parks and Wildlife Service is seeking a determination under the EPBC Act on whether the proposed action (sand scraping and/or engineered rock seawall) will require a formal assessment and approval. PWS will consider the advice in determining an appropriate course of action and next steps in relation to erosion mitigation and Red Handfish protection.
Information about this referral has been published on the Australian Government's Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment (DAWE) website for public consultation. The period of consultation is 10 business days.
Interested parties can find the referral by searching the DAWE website using the unique reference number: EPBC 2021/8940.