Development group Aventuur’s proposed $100 million surf park for Perth has passed another significant milestone this week, with the Chairman of Western Australia’s Environment Protection Authority (EPA) noting the park does not present a substantial risk to the environment.
News that the EPA will therefore not be assessing the project comes after a thorough assessment, including public consultation, in November last year.
The Park will still be subject to a future environmental assessment by relevant government authorities including the Department of Water and Environmental Regulation (DWER), including a native vegetation clearing application which has already been submitted.
This refers to the partial clearing (3.1 hectares) of “largely degraded remnant vegetation” on the Perth Surf Park site, which late last year was cited by some consultants as potentially damaging to important Black Cockatoo habitats.
A claim since dismissed by the EPA: “These investigations and studies found the remnant vegetation to be largely degraded and found no evidence of cockatoo foraging, roosting or breeding on the site,” said Aventuur in a statement today.
“As a team of passionate surfers, we believe it is our responsibility to have a positive impact on the planet, the places we operate in, and our local communities,” the statement continued, noting Aventuur voluntarily referred the project to the WA EPA and the Federal EPA.
“We’re particularly passionate about minimising our ecological footprint, and having our projects deliver net positive environmental outcomes.”
To offset the 3.1 hectare clearing of the remnant vegetation on the Cockburn site, Aventuur will be purchasing 18 hectares of Banksia Woodland in the Swan Coastal Plain, with the offset’s size and location determined by using DWER’s ‘Offset Calculator’.
This offset location is also a noted habitat for Black Cockatoos.
The Cockburn site has existing Balga trees that will be safely extracted during construction, before being re-planted on site once the park is completed as part of their plan to use only native vegetation for the park’s naturescaping.
“The Surf Park’s buildings will be 5 Star Green Star rated, making Perth the first surf park in the world to achieve the classification,” said Aventuur.
“Further sustainable development initiatives planned include utilising ‘zero embedded carbon’ concrete, sourcing 100% of the park’s power requirements from renewable sources (including installing PV solar, batteries and EV charging stations on site), harvesting rainwater from the park’s roofs, composting organic waste on-site, eliminating single use plastics on site, and procuring sustainable, locally sourced materials, goods and consumables wherever possible.”
Subject to regulatory approvals being received, construction is expected to commence towards the end of this year, with the first waves being surfed in late 2025.