The Environment Reference Standard (ERS) is a new tool made under the Environment Protection Act 2017. The ERS:
- identifies environmental values that the Victorian community want to achieve and maintain
- provides a way to assess those environmental values in locations across Victoria
- has indicators and objectives to measure people’s actions against these values.
It isn’t a compliance standard, so it doesn’t:
- create any obligations on duty holders
- define any fixed environmental standards for enforcement.
Many of the environmental quality indicators and objectives from the discontinued State Environment Protection Policies (SEPPs) are used in the ERS. These include:
The ERS includes standards from the Ambient Air Quality SEPP, plus a new objective for odour. Because odour is of significant concern to the community it’s recognised in the ERS.
Most beneficial uses from Noise SEPPs 1 and 2 are in the ERS. It also includes new environmental values for:
- child learning and development
- human tranquillity and enjoyment in natural areas.
New indicators and objectives are also in place to assess these values.
The ERS includes updated standards from the Prevention and Management of Contaminated Land SEPP.
The ERS includes standards from the recently reviewed Waters SEPP.
Reviewed 21 December 2020