Environmental Compliance & Monitoring - Why does it matter?
Often enough the carefully planned for environmental mitigation measures proposed for a given development are never implemented. Such measures remain part of voluminous recommendations, which once the project is approved are promptly forgotten. This is particularly true during the construction phase. Unless environmental management plans such as Construction Environmental Management Plans (CEMP) are prepared & effectively implemented, most of the environmental mitigation measures proposed at the planning stage are lost.
CEMPs or the like need, however, need to be simple, user-friendly and above all implementable. There is no point in prescribing measures that cannot be easily implemented by the construction contractors and even more importantly cannot be quantified and hence cannot be monitored. The other key component of CEMPs is that they need to be regularly monitored by appointed environmental compliance officers.
Compliance staff role is also to report on compliance and provide an on-going feedback loop to the contractor and the relevant authority. Such feed-back loop is crucial in assisting the contractor to continue implementing measures that will protect the environment, but which are feasible and cost effective. Finally, but not least, it is imperative that CEMPs or the like are consistently enforced by the relevant authority.
Land & Fire Assessments (LFA) specialises in environmental compliance monitoring, evaluation and reporting to authorities (eg., construction sites, quarries & site regeneration monitoring).
LFA staff are adept at compiling Construction Environmental Management Plans (CEMP), and at undertaking the associated ongoing monitoring, compliance and reporting. For instance, LFA staff prepared, implemented and reported the CEMP for the construction of an 11 storey building and a 6 storey building at the Southern Cross University Campus on the QLD Gold Coast. The construction went on for approx 4 years and LFA staff undertook all monitoring & liaison with contractor and project team, prepared all by-monthly environmental compliance monitoring reports and the compliance final report, as well all the weekly or fortnightly compliance checklists.