The green light has finally been given by the State Government for the $230 million Port Spencer Deep Water Port grain export facility, with work starting next month.
It will be ready to receive grain for the 2021 harvest.
Planning and Local Government Minister Vickie Chapman said it would deliver significant benefits to local growers and the wider Eyre Peninsula community.
The State Government was working hard to get such projects underway amid the COVID-19 crisis, she said.
Ms Chapman said Peninsula Ports’ modified proposal has been through the major development assessment process.
“I’m pleased this is one of the first major developments I have been able to tick off as the new minister,” she said.
The project will create up to 150 jobs during construction and 20 more permanent local operational jobs, including employment opportunities for Barngarla community members. Operational staff numbers are expected to further peak at 80 staff during harvest.
Peninsula Ports Chief Executive Officer Greg Walters said approval of the project followed significant public consultation across the region.
He said it also would also improve road safety on Eyre Peninsula, by diverting significant truck movements into and out of Port Lincoln.
Peninsula Ports would work with the Tumby Bay Council to ensure ratepayers were not disadvantaged in the maintenance of access roads to the port, he said.
“We’re committed to delivering a new export terminal for the Eyre Peninsula, which will aid in protecting the clean and green reputation of the region’s grain industry and significantly improving the competitiveness of the industry in reaching global markets,” he said.
A historic, Indigenous Land Use Agreement (ILUA) supporting the development of the facility has been signed between the Barngarla Determination Aboriginal Corporation and Peninsula Ports.
It recognises the Barngarla Community’s traditional ownership and cultural connection to the land and sea.
It will enable the Barngarla people to share ownership in the facility and create the basis for the future development of an Indigenous ranger program.
The project is expected to support growers, with increased competition resulting in freight and supply chain savings.