The Coordinator-General may declare a project a 'coordinated project':
- requiring an environmental impact statement (EIS), or
- requiring an impact assessment report (IAR).
A draft EIS is prepared in accordance with:
The EIS is prepared in accordance with the terms of reference (TOR) for the EIS. The EIS provides a comprehensive description of:
- the current environment in the area of the project
- all potential environmental impacts of the project (including social impacts)
- proponent proposals to avoid, minimise, mitigate and/or offset those potential impacts.
The impacts include direct, indirect and cumulative impacts resulting from the construction, commissioning, operation and decommissioning of the project.
The EIS requires studies to establish the qualities of the existing environment (natural, social, economic and built) and community consultation.
An IAR process may be used if the Coordinator-General is satisfied that the environmental effects of the project do not, having regard to their scale and extent, require assessment through the EIS process. It may be used for well-defined, low-medium risk projects where the likely impacts are highly predictable and the proponent's well-defined proposals to avoid, minimise, mitigate and/or offset those impacts are accepted best-practice in that industry. The IAR:
- has no formal terms of reference
- is focused mostly on the:
- locations that may be subject to adverse impacts if not appropriately managed
- potential impacts that are either uncertain, or
- proposed mitigation measures that depart from accepted management practices or standard conditions for that industry.