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Under the Subordinate Legislation Act 1978, regulations in South Australia generally expire after ten years, unless remade before the expiry date. The Electricity (Principles of Vegetation Clearance) Regulations 2010 will expire on 1 September 2021.

The Regulations set out how vegetation must be kept clear of powerlines, most commonly by the South Australian electricity network companies including SA Power Networks and ElectraNet.

The Regulations are administered by the Office of the Technical Regulator (OTR) .

In 2018 SA Power Networks proactively approached the OTR with several proposals for significant changes to the regulations. SA Power Networks also engaged with community stakeholders on their proposed changes.

In view of the 2021 expiry date of the current legislation, the OTR considered it reasonable to administer SA Power Networks’ proposed changes within the framework of the programmed ten yearly review.

The Technical Regulator is now seeking submissions from interested parties to inform the review.

Existing Regulations

The contents of the Regulations currently are:

Regulation 3Interpretation
Regulation 4Duty of electricity entity or council
Regulation 5Duty of occupier
Regulation 6Planting and nurturing vegetation near powerlines
Regulation 7Technical Regulator may grant exemption from principles of vegetation clearance
Regulation 8Vegetation clearance scheme outside prescribed areas agreed between council and electricity entity
Regulation 9Agreement between occupier and electricity entity
Regulation 10Objections relating to vegetation clearance
Regulation 11Notification of clearance by electricity entity to council
Regulation 12Electricity entity vegetation clearance power—prescribed qualification
Schedule 1Clearance and buffer zones around overhead powerlines
Schedule 2Planting or nurturing vegetation near public powerlines
Schedule 3Maps showing prescribed areas
Schedule 4Maps showing bushfire risk area

Submissions

When making a submission, please refer to the Regulation number if commenting on an existing Regulation.

Should a submission suggest a new Regulation, please refer to the Section of the Electricity Act it relates to. Vegetation clearance matters are addressed in the Act in Part 5, from Section 55.

Pre-consultation submissions

Please note that submissions sent to SA Power Networks in their pre-consultation period have been provided to the OTR and will be considered in the review. It is not necessary to submit the same responses direct to the OTR. A list of responses SA Power Networks forwarded to the Technical Regulator is available here. (DOCX 15.3 KB)

The SA Power Networks pre-consultation paper is available here. (PDF 816.0 KB)

A pre-consultation submission from ElectraNet is available here. (PDF 206.6 KB)

Call for submissions overlap

This call for submissions overlaps a minor update to the Regulations which extends the low-risk powerline clearance principles to the largest urban areas outside Adelaide metro and removes four small areas from the bushfire risk area.

Making a submission

Submissions may be made by email to Rebecca.Schulz@sa.gov.au by 23 August 2019.

Related information

The Act and Regulations may be found at www.legislation.sa.gov.au