The continued availability of sea freight to Norfolk Island remains a key priority for the Australian Government, with progress continuing on the proposal for a temporary landing structure at Cascade alongside work on broader measures to address pressures on freight services and infrastructure now and into the future.
The Australian Government has now received the detailed designs for the temporary groyne, or landing structure, and is continuing to work towards approvals. The landing structure is intended to unlock vital additional sea freight capacity for Norfolk Island.
The Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development, and Communications (the Department) commissioned Arup to complete a detailed design package, undertake environmental and biosecurity assessments and development approvals and prepare for construction of the proposed landing structure.
The Department continues to work closely with the Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment and the Norfolk Island Regional Council to ensure this significant project best meets the needs of the Norfolk Island community without negatively affecting the natural environment, including meeting all legislative and biosecurity requirements.
I will keep the community informed as this work progresses and to advise when community consultation will be available on the environmental assessment stage.
Any supplementary landing structure at Cascade will be a short-term solution while the Australian Government continues to settle a Ports Management Strategy. The Strategy will support reliable and safe port operations in the longer-term, essential to the economic wellbeing of the Norfolk Island community.
The current priority is to address immediate pressures and consultation with stakeholders and the community on the next stage of the Ports Management Strategy development now anticipated to take place in early 2022. This will also mean that the success of any short-term measures can inform the longer term strategy and solutions.
At the same time, I continue to progress discussions about securing expanded sea freight shipping services to Norfolk Island. This includes consideration of scheduling barge services to address significant gaps in the current forward sea freight schedule into 2022.
In the meantime, the Australian Government is also addressing a range of critical shortfalls including stock feed, milk and items critical for food production through special air freight flights.
You can be assured, I am focused on ensuring we are progressing appropriate measures to address the short, medium and long-term sea freight needs of the Norfolk Island community and economy.
Any enquiries about the Cascade proposal can be made to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Administrator of Norfolk Island
10 June 2021