Australia: Construction & Infrastructure - What's news - 26 October 2015

In the media

Time to share the love for mega-infrastructure projects
A win or die trying culture is increasingly prevalent in firms bidding for mega-projects says a new report from industry association Consult Australia. The report highlights that firms are either winning bids and staying commercial, or failing and risking their ongoing viability (22 October 2015).  More...

Infinity cable recall: Homeowners risk lives by refusing inspections of dangerous electrical cables
Some homeowners are prioritising money and clean records over their lives by refusing inspections of their homes for recalled Infinity cables that may soon cause fires and electrocutions (19 October 2015).   More...

Lloyd's report details emerging liability risk
Chris Mackinnon, Lloyd's general representative in Australia, told Insurance Business that the report is of particular interest to Australian businesses as the country was one of the worst affected by asbestos claims and new cases of asbestos-related illness are continuing to rise (19 October 2015).  More...

NBN construction footprint provides greater certainty for development
The release of the NBN construction plan provides greater certainty for residential development by further detailing the footprint for the rollout which supports the efficient delivery of new housing (16 October 2015).  More...

Housing costs for owners steady while housing costs for renters increase
An increase in average household incomes has seen owners with a mortgage spending 16 per cent of their income on housing costs in 2013-14, down from 18 per cent in 2011-12. Caroline Daley from the ABS said the figures show the difference in the impact of housing costs on weekly household budgets for those renting and for those with a mortgage (16 October 2015).  More...

MBA: Residential building stronger for the next two years
Master Builders is forecasting another year of solid growth in the value of building work done in 2015 16, providing further impetus to the growth in the Australian economy, Peter Jones, Chief Economist of Master Builders Australia said (14 October 2015).  More...

Feasibility study starts for largest solar farm in Australia
Genex Power is mulling the development of a new large-scale solar photovoltaic project at the Kidston mine site, having appointed AECOM as feasibility manager and owner's engineer for the project. Further opportunities for potential EPC contractors and solar component suppliers are pending (12 October 2015).  More...

Victoria

City to keep moving while Melbourne Metro Rail is built
Melbourne's CBD will keep moving while Australia's biggest public transport project is built underneath. Six months ago, Swanston Street was announced as the preferred alignment for the metro tunnels and the Melbourne Metro Rail Authority began investigating a range of measures to reduce disruption in the CBD (21 October 2015).  More...

World-first technology to reduce power line bushfire risk trialled in Victoria
World-first technology to prevent bushfires being sparked by fallen power lines is being trialled in Victoria, attracting international attention (16 October 2015).  More...

New South Wales

Industry and community confidence in mining boosted
The NSW Department of Planning and Environment today announced the publication of the first four Integrated Mining Policy guidelines (23 October 2015).  More...

Energy savings scheme will reduce living costs
The NSW Government is improving its Energy Savings Scheme (ESS) make it more affordable for households and businesses to purchase and install energy efficient products (13 October 2015).  More...

Queensland

Premier welcomes appointment of Director General Infrastructure, Local Government and Planning
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk has endorsed the appointment of Mr Frankie Carroll to the role of Director-General, Department of Infrastructure, Local Government and Planning (23 October 2015).  More...

First Gladstone LNG shipment a sign of sector strength
Minister Frydenberg congratulated the Australian gas industry on the first shipment of liquefied natural gas (LNG) departing from Santos' Gladstone LNG project in Queensland (19 October 2015).  More...

Carmichael Coal Mine and Rail Infrastructure project
The Carmichael Coal Mine and Rail Infrastructure project has been approved in accordance with national environment law subject to 36 of the strictest conditions in Australian history. The project is located approximately 300 kilometres inland in remote central Queensland. (15 October 2015).  More...  More...

All systems go for Port of Bundaberg as pipeline receives $8.8 million funding boost
The Port of Bundaberg will potentially become a State Development Area and the Palaszczuk Government will increase funding to the Bundaberg Gas Pipeline from $11 million to almost $20 million in a bid to build the port into an economic hub for the Wide Bay region (19 October 2015).   More...

Battery trial reveals trends in customer energy use
Early results from Ergon Energy's 12-month trial involving battery storage, home energy management systems and alternative electricity tariffs in Townsville are shedding light on how technology and tariffs will shape the future energy network (15 October 2015).   More...

Report highlights economic importance of Queensland resources sector
The economic contribution of Queensland's minerals and energy sector is highlighted in a report released today by the Queensland Resources Council (QRC) (13 October 2015).  More...  More...

Published – articles, papers, reports

Breaking up is hard to do: Factors to consider in packaging works for major projects
Consult Australia
The report observes that a competitive market and the long-term viability of firms is at risk. When larger projects come to the market again in the future, unsuccessful firms will not have the ability to demonstrate currency, knowledge and relationships.  More...

NBN three-year construction plan
NBN Co. This plan outlines the proposed construction work for the NBN network up to September 2018 (16 October 2015).  More...

Construction Journal November-December 2015
Editor, Construction Journal and Building Conservation Journal (RICS)
20 Oct 2015 - This edition of the Construction Journal emphasises the importance of taking notice of changes to regulation to avoid construction-related fatalities and injuries More...

Australian Bureau of Statistics
14 October 2015 - Building Activity, Australia, Jun 2015 (cat no. 8752.0).

ACI Research Snapshot: The Profile for Residential Building Approvals by Type and Geography
While there are signs that the monthly level of approvals nationally has reached a peak, the level in the 2015 calendar year is still likely to be higher than in 2014.  More...

Practice and courts

NABERS: October 2015 - Assessors Notice.  More...

NABERS IEQ free trial extended to mid-November
In response to feedback from the property sector, NABERS has announced it is extending the free trial of its new Indoor Environment Quality tool until 16 November 2015.  More...

QBCC Disciplinary Decisions

Licensees suspended or cancelled - 11 October to 18 October 2015 (PDF).

Licensees excluded - 11 October to 18 October 2015 (PDF).

Change in Pool Safety Rules
Queensland's pool safety laws have been progressively introduced since 2009 and apply to all new and existing pools. As from 1 December 2015, there will only be one pool safety standard for all regulated pools.  More...  More...

Cases

PT Bayan Resources TBK v BCBC Singapore Pte Ltd [2015] HCA 36
Procedure – Freezing orders – Power of Supreme Court of Western Australia to make freezing order in relation to prospective judgment of foreign court which would be registrable under Foreign Judgments Act 1991 (Cth) – First respondent commenced proceeding against appellant in High Court of Singapore – Proceeding remains pending – First respondent applied to Supreme Court for freezing order under O 52A of Rules of the Supreme Court 1971 (WA) against appellant's assets – Freezing order made – Whether freezing order in relation to prospective foreign judgment within inherent power of Supreme Court.  Words and phrases – "federal jurisdiction", "freezing order", "inherent jurisdiction", "inherent power", "prospective enforcement".  More...

Basetec Services Pty Ltd v Leighton Contractors Pty Ltd (No 4) [2015] FCA 1093
PRACTICE AND PROCEDURE – application for further security for costs – whether there was reason to believe the applicant would be unable to pay the respondent's costs – where the applicant had provided security, had cash 'reserves' and had an undrawn overdraft facility – where trial to take place within two months – Corporations Act 2001 (Cth) s 1335. Held: Application dismissed.  More...

EPS Constructions Pty Ltd v Mass Holdings Pty Ltd [2015] NSWCA 317
CONTRACT – formation – whether concluded agreement reached between partners and building company – whether primary judge erred in making findings of fact.  More...

In the matter of PPK Group Limited [2015] NSWSC 1498
CORPORATIONS – winding up – statutory demand – application to set aside creditors' statutory demands under Corporations Act 2001 (Cth) s 459H – whether a genuine dispute has been established – whether offsetting claims have been established – whether some other reason for statutory demand to be set aside - ACMI sold engine management systems which are a component of mining equipment known as a "COALTRAM" which is used in underground coalmining in high methane gas environments and is sold to end users in the mining industry.   More...

Ryan v Worthington[2015] QCA 201
APPEAL AND NEW TRIAL – CONTRACTS – BUILDING, ENGINEERING AND RELATED CONTRACTS – OTHER MATTERS – where the applicant wanted to relocate, extend and add to his house – where the applicant entered into a building contract with the respondent – where the applicant purported to terminate the contract as the works had not been completed within 1.5 times the initial contract period, allowing for delays – where the respondent submitted that the applicant breached the contract by terminating – where the respondent also purported to terminate the contract on the basis that there was an asserted failure to provide free and uninterrupted access, pay the last two progress claims, and that the applicant had taken back possession of the works without consent – where the respondent commenced proceedings with QCAT – where at first instances the respondent was successful – where the applicant appealed – where QCAT's Appeal Tribunal allowed the appeal, set aside the orders, and remitted the matter "for determination according to law" – where the applicant seeks leave to challenge the decision of the Appeal Tribunal – whether the Appeal Tribunal erred in its approach to the construction of the contract; the proper construction of clause 15.1 and 21.1 of the contract – whether leave to appeal should be granted – whether the Appeal Tribunal fell into error by finding that it had no alternative but to remit the matter.  More...

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