Section 30A is an overriding provision of the Environment Protection Act 1970 (the Act) under which EPA can authorise discharges, emissions, storage, treatment, disposal and handling of waste in emergencies and other temporary situations that would otherwise be an offence under the Act. 

30A approvals are not issued lightly, as they permit activities that would not normally be allowed. 

Owners, occupiers or operators of commercial or industrial premises (with or without an EPA licence) may apply for a 30A approval. Examples of 30A approvals include emergency events (such as cleanup after a bushfire or flood), temporary events (like temporary relief of a public nuisance or community hardship) and commissioning (bringing new equipment on or offline). 

EPA decides when to issue a 30A approval on a case-by-case basis, but we must respond to applications promptly. The approval must be consistent with the purpose, principles and other provision of the Act. 

EPA takes a risk-based approach to the assessment of a 30A approval to ensure that the proposed activities: 

  • are appropriate for the event 
  • will not cause any long-term damage to the environment 
  • consider the needs of the community and other stakeholders. 

30A approvals can last for up to 120 days. 

Section 30A approvals (publication 1590) provides further guidance for industry on how and when to apply to EPA Victoria for an approval under Section 30A of the Act, and the information that EPA requires in support of an application. 

Search for a 30A approval

How to submit your application

You will need to submit:

Email the whole package of information to

If the 30A application is for an emergency or is time sensitive, call EPA on 1300 372 842 (1300 EPA VIC) to discuss your situation.

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Reviewed 24 September 2020