WorkSafe Victoria and Environment Protection Authority Victoria (EPA) have signed a new Memorandum of Understanding which further strengthens collaboration between both regulators.
The new MoU further streamlines the ways in which WorkSafe and the EPA share information, particularly in relation to major hazard facilities and dangerous goods.
The agreement details how the two regulators work together on major projects, such as the closure of the Hazelwood Power Station, and reduce the duplication of certain work while ensuring the protection of human and environmental health.
The new MoU comes at an important time for both regulators, which will each play a key role in ensuring the decommissioning of the Hazelwood Power Station in the Latrobe Valley is undertaken safely for workers and surrounding residents.
While recognising the independent powers of each regulator, the MoU aims to strengthen co-operation and the exchange of information in relation to:
- Registration and licensing of existing and new major hazard facilities
- Incidents that may arise at a major hazards facility, to ensure each party can achieve its regulatory objectives and functions
- Identification of incident trends and patterns in order to support prevention activities
WorkSafe Executive Director Health and Safety, Marnie Williams, said the new MoU will strengthen the collaboration between both organisations in relation to the management of environmental and workplace health and safety matters.
“Our new MoU commits both regulators to streamlined processes so we can move more quickly to provide each other with technical and practical advice when assessing major hazard facilities or if an emergency situation was to occur,” Ms Williams said.
“The decommissioning of the Hazelwood Power Station will last for a number of years and WorkSafe is committed to working with the EPA and other relevant authorities to ensure this work meets with OH&S legislation.”
EPA Executive Director of Regulatory Practice and Strategy, Chris Webb, said the MoU demonstrated how the EPA worked with its co-regulators to protect the environment and human health.
“This MoU will further enable the EPA to prevent and reduce harm to the environment and human health through information-sharing and greater collaboration with WorkSafe,” Mr Webb said.