Page 80 - AGL Sustainability Report 2011

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Environment
AGL Energy Limited 78
Environmental risk
Biodiversity, land management and
cultural heritage
Development of energy generation and upstream gas
assets often involves construction of industrial plant and
facilities on land that has value for reasons of biodiversity
and cultural heritage, in addition to its commercial value.
AGL is committed to developing and operating its assets
in an environmentally and socially responsible manner.
Approach
During the development phase of projects, project teams follow a
rigorous process to identify and manage any risks associated with
cultural heritage and biodiversity values. A fatal flaw analysis is
employed at the early stages of development projects to identify
any environmental aspect, including biodiversity and cultural
heritage, which may pose a significant risk to the development itself
or to AGL. These projects are executed in accordance with AGL’s
Project Management Framework, which involves a structured ‘gated’
approvals process.
Most of AGL’s development projects are considered under planning
legislation as State-significant major projects, and therefore require
comprehensive environmental impact assessments including flora
and fauna studies and cultural heritage assessments.
Following development approval, projects are undertaken strictly in
accordance with approved environmental management plans using
established environmental management systems.
Performance
Torrens Island Power Station is an excellent example of how AGL
seeks to operate in an environmentally and culturally sensitive
manner. Located in a protected marine environment within proximity
of Adelaide’s central business district, Torrens Island Power Station
is the largest power station in South Australia, supplying up to 1,280
MW of generation capacity into the electricity network.
The power station maintains an accredited ISO 14000
Environmental Management System, and is a community partner
of volunteer organisations dedicated to protecting the local marine
wildlife populations. AGL supports a wildlife rehabilitation facility
at the power station site, where volunteer group Australian Marine
Wildlife Research & Rescue Organisation (AMWRRO) provides
rescue and rehabilitation support for birds, sea lions, penguins and
other animals injured in and around the Torrens Island estuary. AGL
and its employees donate both time and money to support the work
of AMWRRO.
AGL employees have also played an active role in helping the local
Kaurna people to repatriate their ancestors’ remains to Torrens
Island. AGL plans to develop up to 700 MW of additional peaking
generation and a gas storage facility at Torrens Island. As part of the
Torrens Island Energy Park project, AGL contributed over $20,000
for the repatriation of the remains of 68 Kaurna ancestors during
FY2011. Through the support provided by AGL, the Kaurna people
have been able to reclaim the remains held by the South Australian
Museum, gain permission from the Australian Director of National
Parks for the reburial of the Kaurna ancestral remains within the
Torrens Island Conservation Park, hold cultural ceremonies on
Torrens Island and record the event in a documentary. In December
2010, AGL employees joined with Kaurna elders and South
Australian Government representatives on Torrens Island for a
traditional Sorry Ceremony to rebury the remains of their people,
almost 200 years after their removal.
AGL Biomass Policy
In recognition of the effect that electricity generation can have on
biodiversity, AGL has published a Biomass Policy which states that
AGL will not source fuel for power generation from native forest
or from crops located in areas cleared of native forest after 1990.
The policy is available at
agl.com.au/BiomassPolicy.