Jeremy Spencer has been undertaking Acid Sulphate Soil (ASS) investigations and management programs since 2007 and has been integral in the effective identification, treatment and management of ASS at many sites.
These include the residential developments of Provence (Busselton), Dalyellup (Bunbury), Northwood (Albany) and Rapids Landing (Margaret River).
Acid sulfate soils are wetland soils and unconsolidated sediments that contain iron sulfides which, when exposed to atmospheric oxygen in the presence of water, form sulfuric acid. Such exposure occurs when these soils are disturbed, resulting in acidification and potential mobilisation of arsenic, aluminium, iron, manganese and other heavy metals which can subsequently contaminate receiving ground and surface waters. The release of these reaction products can be detrimental to biota, human health and built infrastructure.
The presence of ASS has been a recognized issue of concern in Western Australia since 2003. ASS investigations are commonly required as part of conditions of subdivision, or as a requirement for dewatering licence applications.
Great Southern Bio Logic has extensive experience in the development and implementation of preliminary and detailed investigation programs to assess a site for contamination.
With a detailed understanding of relevant legislation and management guidelines, we can design appropriate sampling and analysis programs to determine the extent of contamination and potential effects. Great Southern Bio Logic will provide detailed investigation reports suitable for submission to the Department of Environmental Regulation (DER) together with advice for site specific remedial solutions.
The Contaminated Sites Act 2003 identifies contaminants as substances in land, water or air, in concentrations above background levels, which may prove harmful to human health, the environment or environmental values. Contaminated sites may include buildings and structures on land, as well as in surface and ground water.
There is an onus on landholders to consider and report any potential for contamination from both present and historic land uses. Contaminated site assessments may be required where there is a change in land use, where past use may have been associated with contamination, or in response to a polluting event. There may also be conditional requirements for property purchase or rezoning.
Great Southern Bio Logic Senior Environmental Scientist Jeremy Spencer is one of few DPaW accredited dieback interpreters in South West Australia.
He also has extensive experience working in the unique and diverse floral communities of the South Coast.
With detailed operational understanding of disease management, Great Southern Bio Logic can produce hygiene and management plans to satisfy project requirements. We also produce mapping products including ArcGIS ™ shapefiles of disease extent for operational planning.
While research continues, there is currently no cure for Phytophthora dieback, although ongoing treatment with the chemical Phosphite may afford some limited protection against the disease. Mapping known occurrences and undertaking stringent hygiene measures with access controls to ensure vehicles, machinery and footwear do not spread disease is a major factor in limiting the spread of Phytophthora dieback.
We have extensive experience in field survey techniques, flora sampling and inventory, vegetation mapping, monitoring and data analysis together with rehabilitation and mitigation of threatening processes, and can provide advice and professional reporting to state and local government, land managers and individuals.
Similarly, Great Southern Bio Logic has a wide network of professional associates with extensive experience in the development and implementation of fauna survey and reporting assessments. With associates based in the Great Southern, South West and across the Perth metropolitan regions we are well placed to undertake flora and fauna assessments.
Great Southern Bio Logic are able to undertake all aspects of soil and water investigations including monitoring and reporting for industrial sites, waste disposal facilities, storm water management sites, development projects and residential subdivisions.
Working closely with accredited Laboratories in Perth and the Great Southern Region, Great Southern Bio Logic develop site specific analysis and monitoring programs to identify contaminants and produce tailored management plans.
As a former Senior Water Allocation Officer with the Department of Water, Jeremy Spencer from Great Southern Bio Logic has a detailed knowledge and understanding of the regulatory processes and requirements for investigation and monitoring programs.
Soil and water monitoring programs are often required to meet license conditions, planning approvals and operational best practice for industrial and development projects.
Great Southern Bio Logic has undertaken extensive ambient air quality monitoring and personal exposure monitoring projects across the south coast region, including within the Port of Albany.
Air quality can be a particular concern in many work places and can cause serious health and safety issues for staff. Air quality can be impacted by a range of activities and events associated with many industrial processes and may involve gasses or particulate matter including dust.
Air quality issues in most industries are well documented and understood, with exposure standards developed for most potential contaminants. Working closely with Laboratories in Perth that maintain a high level of appropriate NATA accreditations, Great Southern Bio Logic has staff with relevant qualifications and experience to develop analysis programs to identify contaminants and to establish appropriate monitoring programs. Data gained by monitoring staff exposure to contaminants allows the measurement of exposures and the development of appropriate mitigation strategies required.
With over 20 years’ experience in natural resource management including government and private sectors, Great Southern Bio Logic can offer both operational and legislative experience to satisfy state and local government conditions.
All property sub-divisions and development projects require a formal submission to local governments for assessment and approval. The assessment process seeks comment and advice from government agencies and this information typically influences the conditions that are placed on the proposal prior to approval.
Conditions commonly include a range of environmental assessments including:
• Acid Sulfate Soil investigations;
• Suitability for onsite disposal of wastewater;
• Bushfire Attack Level (BAL) assessments; and
• Flora and Fauna Assessments including Phytophthora dieback.
Great Southern Bio Logic offers services including the development of asbestos registers and associated audits plus asbestos monitoring programs required during the removal of asbestos from the workplace.
In 2013, Jeremy Spencer from Great Southern Bio Logic completed training for Nationally Accredited Asbestos Assessors. He couples this with experience performing Asbestos register audits and delivering monitoring programs for best practice, licenced Asbestos removal.
Great Southern Bio Logic has the expertise to develop and deliver specific training packages to raise awareness and understanding of environmental issues and responsibilities.
Jeremy Spencer of Great Southern Bio Logic holds a Certificate IV in workplace education and training and has several years’ experience developing and delivering environmental education programs for both the former Department of CALM and the Tasmanian Parks and Wildlife Service. He has delivered targeted training on issues including Phytophthora dieback disease for the Shire of Busselton, Elders Forestry WA, community groups and schools.
Meredith Spencer designed and delivered the former Department of Environment & Conservation “Green Card” Environmental Code of Conduct training for staff and contractors working on the South Coast. This programme aims to raise awareness of potential environmental impacts of operational works and provides individuals with principles for mitigation.
It has been demonstrated that by raising awareness of environmental issues and fostering understanding and appreciation of their impacts and mitigation, individuals can better appreciate the requirements of management actions.
With this basic awareness and understanding, the implementation and subsequent success of environmental management actions may be enhanced. Training packages can be developed around key learning outcomes and involve both theoretical and field based components.