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Community Update – Victoria

June 5th, 2024

Category: Community updates

Community Update – Victoria cover

A word from our CEO, Caroline Wykamp

As we progress under tri-government ownership, commence public exhibition of our environmental approval documents, and move towards construction, I want to share a timely reminder of why we need Marinus Link.

Caroline Wykamp
Marinus Link CEO Caroline Wykamp

A world with Marinus Link will:

  • Connect us to key renewable energy resources as we transition away from coal. 
  • Empower communities with affordable, reliable, clean energy. 
  • Create thousands of jobs and an estimated $3.9 billion in economic stimulus.
  • Counter climate change, meaning the world benefits from Marinus Link.

Responsibility for a clean energy future sits with all of us – thank you to the Gippsland community and our landholders for their support and cooperation as we progress this project of national significance. 

We hope you enjoy our latest Community Update and look forward to catching up with you in Gippsland over the next couple of months.  

public event talking with a local about Marinus Link's alignment

Environment & planning approvals – Public Exhibition

Marinus Link’s Environmental Impact Statement/Environment Effects Statement (EIS/EES) and draft Planning Scheme Amendment (PSA) will be on public exhibition from 31 May – 12 July 2024. 

We’re hosting drop-in sessions throughout Gippsland to answer questions and provide information on the documents and approvals process. 

If you can’t attend an engagement, we’re also hosting and recording two webinars.

Which session is right for me?

  • Our landholder drop-in sessions and webinar have been planned for landholders who are directly impacted by Marinus Link. These include landholders along our proposed route who may be hosting easements. 
     
  • Our community drop-in sessions and webinar are for members of the public interested in the project. These sessions are for everyone!
Vic Engagment map

Session details:

Mirboo North landholder drop-in session 

When: Tuesday, 4 June 2024 – 10am-12pm

Where: Mirboo North Grainstore – 53-55 Ridgeway Mirboo North, VIC 3871 

Mirboo North community drop-in session 

When: Tuesday, 4 June 2024 – 5-7pm

Where: Mirboo North Grainstore – 53-55 Ridgeway Mirboo North, VIC 3871 

Fish Creek community drop-in session  

When: Wednesday 5 June 2024 – 1pm-3pm

Where: Fish Creek Community Hall – Main Hall – 13 Falls Rd, Fish Creek VIC 3959

Dumbalk landholder drop-in session 

When: Thursday 6 June 2024 – 10am-12pm

Where: Dumbalk Community Centre – Super Room – 29-31 Farmers Road, Dumbalk East, VIC 3956 

Dumbalk community drop-in session 

When: Thursday, 6 June 2024 – 5-7pm

Where: Dumbalk Community Centre – Super Room – 29-31 Farmers Road, Dumbalk East, VIC 3956

Sandy Point landholder drop-in session 

When: Wednesday 12 June 2024 – 10am-12pm

Where: Sandy Point Community Centre – Main Hall – Church Parade, Sandy Point VIC 3959 

Sandy Point community drop-in session

When: Wednesday 12 June 2024 – 5pm-7pm

Where: Sandy Point Community Centre – Main Hall – Church Parade, Sandy Point VIC 3959 

Churchill pop-up stall

When: Thursday, 13 June 2024 – 10am-1pm

Where: Churchill Shopping Centre – Monash Way &, Marina Dr, Churchill VIC 3842

Churchill community drop-in session

When: Thursday, 13 June 2024 – 5-7pm

Where: Churchill Community Hub – 9/11 Philip Parade, Churchill VIC 3842

Meeniyan landholder drop-in session

When: Friday, 14 June 2024 – 5-7pm

Where: Meeniyan Hall – 97 Whitelaw St, Meeniyan VIC 3956

Landholder webinar

When: Tuesday, 18 June 2024 – 3pm-4pm

To register: https://forms.office.com/r/xH95HnbebA

Community webinar

When: Wednesday, 19 June 2024  – 6pm-7pm

To register: https://forms.office.com/r/xH95HnbebA

What will be on Public Exhibition in Victoria:

  • One combined Environmental Impact Statement / Environment Effects Statement (EIS/EES) for Commonwealth and Victorian jurisdictions.
  • One draft Planning Scheme Amendment (PSA) in Victoria. 

Viewing the EIS/EES and draft PSA

The EIS/EES documents and the draft PSA are now available to read and download, free of charge, at marinuslink.com.au/assessment

The full EIS/EES and the draft PSA will be made available in hard copy at the following locations during the exhibition period: 

  • Marinus Link Traralgon Office 28-30 Kay Street, Traralgon VIC 3844  
  • State Library of Victoria 328 Swanston Street, Melbourne VIC 3000 

Selected information of the EIS/EES and the draft PSA will be made available in hard copy at the following locations during the exhibition period: 

  • Churchill Community Centre 9/11 Phillip Parade, Churchill 3842 
  • Latrobe City Council Offices 141 Commercial Road, Morwell 3840 
  • Mirboo North Library 34 Ridgway, Mirboo North 3871 
  • Sandy Point Community Centre Church Parade, Sandy Point 3959 
  • South Gippsland Shire Offices 9 Smith Street, Leongatha 3953 
  • Traralgon Library 32 Kay Street, Traralgon 3844 

For those who may have accessibility issues, or where electronic options are impracticable, hard copies of some documents may be requested, by phoning Marinus Link on 1300 765 275 or emailing team@marinuslink.com.au

Making a submission 

Anyone can make a submission on the Victorian and Commonwealth aspects of the combined EIS/EES and the draft PSA.  

Submissions must be made in writing and received by 11:59pm on Friday 12 July 2024. 
Submissions can be lodged via the Victorian Government’s Engage Victoria website: engage.vic.gov.au/MarinusLink-IAC

If you do not have internet access and are unable to lodge a submission online, contact Planning Panels Victoria (PPV) through the Customer Call Centre on 136 186 (select Option 6) and request a hard copy submission coversheet.


Same project, new owners

On 22 March 2024, Marinus Link separated from Tasmania’s transmission and distribution network service provider, TasNetworks, to become a stand-alone entity. 

The new ownership structure for Marinus Link is a three-part equity ownership between the Australian Government (49%), the Victorian Government (33.3%) and the Tasmanian Government (17.7%).  

Marinus Link CEO Caroline Wykamp said the new ownership arrangement is a fulfilment of government commitments to progress this nationally significant project. 

“It was always planned and appropriate that Marinus Link would separate from TasNetworks, once ready,” said Ms Wykamp.

Ownership share of Marinus Link

“This change will mean we can increase our focus on Victoria and the needs of our stakeholders, landholders and communities in Gippsland.”  

Marinus Link’s key activities, schedules and scope will not change as a result of the new ownership, including environmental approvals, revenue setting, tender processes and a final investment decision.

A new board of directors has been appointed to MLPL with representatives from each of the three governments.   

illustration of the NEM from space with Marinus Link

Marinus Link is licenced

In December 2023, Marinus Link Pty Ltd was granted an electricity transmission licence by the Essential Services Commission in Victoria (ESC). 

The ESC is an independent regulator that promotes the long-term interests of Victorian consumers with respect to the price, quality and reliability of essential services, including energy. This licence will allow Marinus Link to transmit electricity in Victoria.
 
All electricity companies must hold a licence (unless an exemption applies) to generate, transmit, supply or sell electricity in Victoria. Once a licence is granted by the ESC, licence holders have statutory rights and powers under the Electricity Industry Act 2000 (Vic) regarding the planning, construction, and operation of electricity transmission projects, including powers to compulsorily access and acquire easements.

If you would like more information on Marinus Link’s transmission licence, please visit our website – marinuslink.com.au/landholder-engagement or reach out to our project team through the details in this Community Update.    

Thank you, landholders

We are committed to working with impacted landholders as we progress this project of national significance.  

We recognise the vital role of landholders in enabling transmission projects that support our transition to renewable energy. We sincerely thank them for their ongoing cooperation as we near the completion of our design and approvals phase. 


Reflecting on where we’ve been

Engagement highlights for Gippsland over recent months include our eleventh Gippsland Stakeholder Liaison Group Meeting, meeting with Traditional Owners on Cultural Heritage Assessments and holding a pop-up stall at Farm World. 

These and other more direct engagements provide an invaluable opportunity for us to connect with our community, share project updates and importantly, gain feedback from those across the region.

Marinus Link team members Brett McGennisken, Rochelle Reinhardt and Shannon Byrne with former Australian world champion woodchopper, Tasmanian David Foster, at Farm World 2024.
Marinus Link team members Brett McGennisken, Rochelle Reinhardt and Shannon Byrne with former Australian world champion woodchopper, Tasmanian David Foster, at Farm World 2024.

Marine surveys in Waratah Bay

This month we are undertaking marine surveys in Waratah Bay. These surveys will help us understand the marine ecology and underwater cultural heritage values in the area of the cable alignment.

Types of surveys we are undertaking:

Magnetometer survey

  • What is it? This survey reads for magnetic fields which detect if there are any metal objects in the area. Objects include ferrous metal objects such as anchors.
  • What does it involve? A small, manned work vessel (boat) will be towing survey equipment. People may see the vessel from the beach at Waratah Bay.
  • What are the impacts? This survey is low impact and will not disturb marine life or recreational activities in the area.

Benthic survey

  • What is it? Benthic surveys are used to determine if proposed marine works will have an impact on marine species and how to best mitigate, reduce or remove those impacts. They involve taking images of the seafloor and marine life using cameras.
  • What does it involve? A small, manned work vessel (boat) will be towing survey equipment such as cameras and a remotely operated vehicle (ROV). People may see the vessel and activity from the beach at Waratah Bay.
  • What are the impacts? This survey is low impact and will not disturb marine life or recreational activities in the area.
Waratah bay

Answering your questions 

What are environmental and planning approvals?

Environmental and planning approvals are assessment frameworks designed by governments to determine whether projects should proceed.

They are typically for large-scale infrastructure and resource projects such as Marinus Link.

Why do we need environmental and planning approvals?

The Australian Government, along with states and territories, have laws in place to protect Australia’s environment, social values and cultural heritage.

All major infrastructure projects in Australia must assess whether their project could have  significant environmental and social impacts.

The approvals process also requires projects to explain how impacts (if any) are to be minimised and managed.

What approvals does Marinus Link need?

Marinus Link is proposed to be built in Tasmania, Bass Strait and Victoria. Therefore, the project needs to obtain environment, planning and heritage approvals under Commonwealth, Victorian and Tasmanian legislation to proceed.

What does seeking environmental and planning approval involve?

For Marinus Link, we must prepare and submit approval documents, such as Environmental Impact Statements (Commonwealth), and Environmental Effects Statement (Victoria), for assessment.

These documents are the culmination of years of surveying, studies, designing and engagement. They contain chapters about specific environmental assessments, such as land and visual impacts and noise and vibration.

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