US energy giant Chevron's massive Wheatstone LNG project will not have any carbon emission restrictions after the State Government ignored its own independent advice and removed them.
In the latest sign of a split between the Government and its top environmental adviser, Environment Minister Bill Marmion lifted conditions that would have minimised Wheatstone's pollution.
The move comes after Chevron's claim in July that the Federal Government's carbon tax, which came into effect on July 1, had made the conditions redundant.
Despite the Environmental Protection Authority last month insisting the conditions complemented rather than duplicated the tax, Mr Marmion ignored the advice and upheld Chevron's request.
It means Chevron will no longer have to keep its carbon emissions below 0.26 tonnes for every tonne of LNG produced, nor have its performance independently assessed and made public.
Instead, Chevron will only be required to report its emissions annually, even though the $40 billion Pilbara project could increase WA's carbon emissions by 13.5 per cent.
The decision adds to tension between the EPA and the minister's office after a similar decision by Mr Marmion in November to scrap pollution restrictions on the Browse LNG project.
That development alone would increase WA's greenhouse emissions by as much as 52 per cent compared with 2007 levels.Mr Marmion defended the decision on Wheatstone by repeating his argument that regulating greenhouse gas emissions was primarily the responsibility of Canberra.
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