What is a Review of Enironmental Factors (REF)?
An REF is an environmental assessment under Part 5 of the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979 (EP&A Act). It is that is required to be implemented for ‘Activities’ suchas those conductd by ‘self determining authorities’ (e.g. government agencies and public authorities) as part of the assessment of activities needing approval under NSW legislation and planning instruments, including:
- the National Parks and Wildlife Act 1974 (NPW Act) and National Parks and Wildlife Regulation 2002 (NP&W Reg)
- the Fisheries Management Act 1994
- Heritage Act 1977
- all requirements under section 5A of the EP&A Act, specifically ‘Assessments of Significance’ ( 7-part test )
- State Environmental Planning Policy (Infrastructure) 2007
- all other relevant State Environmental Planning Policies (SEPP)
Does my project require an REF report?
An REF precedes the granting of an approval (ie lease, licence, easement) for an ‘activity’ that is undertaken by, or on-behalf of a public authority. An approval cannot be granted until the REF is determined.
An REF serves three main purposes:
1. assiting and documenting the determining authority’s determination of whether an activity should be approved, taking into account to the fullest extent possible all matters affecting or likely to affect the environment (s.111 EP&A Act).
2. It assists the determining authority’s determination of whether the activity is likely to have a significant effect on the environment or significantly affect threatened species, populations or ecological communities or their habitats, in which case an environmental impact statement (EIS) and/or species impact statement (SIS) will need to be prepared and considered before approval may be granted (s.112 EP&A Act).
3. further assisting in the development of appropriate conditions should approval be given.
REF reports often contain technical reports produced by Ecologist Consultants (e.g. Flora and Fauna Assessments), Heritage Consultants (e.g. Heritage Assessment Reports), Contaminated Lands (Soil Scientists) and others to address the specific details required for the project approval. Not all REF documents require technical reports.
Narla Environmental is experienced at providing REF reports and technical reports for public authorities in Sydney and Regional NSW. We have worked for government agencies (e.g. Sydney Water and NSW Roads and Maritime Authority), an many local councils across New South Wales.
We are experienced in undertaking stakeholder and expert consultation to produce an effective REF report.
Narla Environmental understand the importance of metting project deadlines while maintaining quality of work and can provide examples of previous work and references on request.
If you would like a free quote for an REF report for your project, please call Narla Environmental Today on: 0414314859
Email us: firstname.lastname@example.org