Information for Landholders
- Rural residential
- Small rural lifestyle
- Urban residential
- Commercial forestry
- Local and State Government
Accessing Private Land
Planning phase access
During the planning phase of a project TasNetworks may need to access private land for the purpose of conducting initial land surveys, undertaking valuations and assessing the initial proposed route to inform a final route.
TasNetworks seeks to obtain land access by voluntary Landholder agreement and will meaningfully engage and work with landholders to reach mutually acceptable outcomes.
If the landholder agrees to provide TasNetworks with access, TasNetworks will prepare a land access licence (Licence) and then present this to the Landholder for their review and signing. Landholders will have the opportunity to have the Licence reviewed by an independent legal practitioner, selected by the landholder, with TasNetworks covering reasonable fees up to a set amount.
The Licence covers matters such as the licence area, when TasNetworks is able to access the land, any specific access requirements such as opening and closing gates, as well as obligations with respect to any damage that may occur.
A licence fee of $2,000 will be payable by TasNetworks upon entering into the Licence.
TasNetworks’ position is that it will only exercise statutory powers as a last resort. This option will only be considered where all alternative options have been exhausted and it is critical to allow the timely progress of transmission projects.
Pre-construction and construction phase access
Pre-construction and construction access will be facilitated by way of a construction access licence which is a voluntary negotiated agreement entered with the Landholder. This licence forms part of the Licence and Easement Option Agreement and sets out the conditions, rights and obligations in relation to TasNetworks’ access to a landholder’s property.
A Property Management Plan will be developed to outline the standards and commitments of TasNetworks when entering and working on the nominated land over the course of the pre-construction and construction phase. The Property Management Plan is designed to facilitate timely and effective communications between TasNetworks and landholders.
The standards and commitments for each property will be provided to the construction contractor and TasNetworks will regularly assess the contractor’s performance to ensure the Property Management Plan is being correctly implemented.
The standards and commitments in the Property Management Plan apply to all pre-construction and construction activities. Typical activities include but are not limited to:
Phase Typical Activities Pre-construction
- Periodic meetings with project staff and Landholders to discuss the project, understand property operations and address matters raised by landholders
- Inspection of the project area to assess social, environmental, heritage and technical matters relevant to the project
- Inspection of directly affected properties to assess landholder compensation
- Undertake vegetation clearing and access track construction where applicable
- Periodic meetings with project staff and landholders to discuss construction activities
- Vegetation clearing and access track / tower pad construction
- Delivery of steel, concrete and insulators
- Installation of foundations
- Assembly and erection of transmission towers
- Installation of conductor onto each tower, a process known as ‘stringing’ the line
- Testing and commissioning of the transmission line
- Remediation and reinstatement of areas affected by construction (where required) including temporary access tracks and construction sites
- Close out meetings with landholders following completion of construction
Post-construction, operations and maintenance phase access
Once the transmission infrastructure is operational, TasNetworks will carry out periodic inspections of the line, easement vegetation and access tracks pursuant to TasNetworks’ standard schedules and procedures. This is typically done once or twice a calendar year. Inspections are generally undertaken by vehicles, with helicopters sometimes used. Additional inspections may be required to perform emergency repairs.
Vegetation management is typically undertaken once or twice a year to ensure the safe operation of the transmission line. The technique adopted for each area takes into account a number of matters including landholder requirements, type of vegetation, extent of regrowth, terrain and the local environmental conditions. Maintenance of access tracks is undertaken on an ‘as needed’ basis to ensure that vehicle access to structure sites is available for inspections and structure maintenance.
As part of the comprehensive approvals process, the NWTD are being assessed under the Major Infrastructure Development Approvals Act 1999 (MIDAA). This assessment process requires the registering of what is called a ‘notified corridor’.
A ‘notified corridor’ is the linear corridor of land required to support delivery of major infrastructure at some time in the future.
The MIDAA process requires that a notified corridor must be in place before TasNetworks can submit a Development Application (DA) and Environmental Impact Statement (EIS). These are the key documents used to independently assess the NWTD project and make a decision about whether the project should be approved.
The notified corridor is made by the Minister for Planning at TasNetworks’ request. As well as being needed prior to submitting the DA and EIS, the notified corridor ensures any future developments do not prevent the project from going ahead while it progresses through the approvals phase which can take many months.
A Q&A brochure is available with further information relating to the notified corridor process.
Transmission Line Easements fact sheet
Land and Easement Acquisition
TasNetworks is committed to collaborating with all affected landholders and will work to minimise impacts of land and easement acquisition as much as possible. TasNetworks believe that by working together, providing clear and timely information and understanding landholders’ specific requirements, it is possible to reach voluntary agreements that are mutually acceptable.
Please refer to the following fact sheets for information regarding land access, land and easement acquisition and the compensation process for Landholders:
TasNetworks Land Access, Land and Easement Acquisition and Compensation Process
Easement and Compensation fact sheet for Landholders
Strategic Benefit Payment (SBP)
To support the delivery of a modern electricity grid for Tasmania that benefits communities and consumers, the State Government is establishing a Strategic Benefit Payments Scheme (SBP Scheme) for new major transmission projects. Once finalised, TasNetworks has agreed to provide the SBP to eligible landholders impacted by transmission developments.
The proposed SBP will be reflective of the nature of the energy developments proposed in Tasmania. It will be payable to eligible landholders impacted by transmission infrastructure and will be in addition to that afforded under the Land Acquisition Act 1993 (Tas) (LAA).
What is an easement?
An easement is a property right granted by a landholder that permits TasNetworks to install, safely access and maintain its electricity infrastructure which is situated on a landholder’s property. As part of our planning approach, TasNetworks look to install new infrastructure in areas that overall have the least impact on surrounding neighbours and the broader community, while meeting other considerations such as the most feasible direct route, environmental factors, constructability, and cost.
Under an easement agreement, the landholder agrees not to do anything that compromises or interferes with the safe operation of the electricity infrastructure that has been installed on their land in the easement area.
This means that certain farming activities may need to be limited within the easement, but TasNetworks do try to enable low risk activities to continue, such as cropping.
More information on what landholders can and cannot do within easements can be found in TasNetworks’ Transmission Line Easements fact sheet.
Access to easements post construction/ongoing operation and maintenance
TasNetworks, its agents and contractors have the right to access transmission line easements at any time to ensure safe network operation. This includes routine tasks such as inspecting the transmission lines and making any necessary repairs and alterations.
TasNetworks also needs to manage vegetation and remove structures that could interfere with transmission lines. Sometimes protective structures may need to be placed around equipment. In addition to these easements, TasNetworks has statutory rights to carry out other necessary work on electricity infrastructure located on public land, including council land.
It is important that Landholders do not place any obstructions within 15 metres of transmission towers as TasNetworks need to ensure that there is clear access to towers at all times.
Working within easements
Restrictions apply to activities like erecting structures and buildings, storing materials, undertaking excavation work and lighting of fires within the easement.
If you are thinking of building a fence, planting trees or doing something that might affect the transmission lines within an easement, please give us a call before proceeding.
For a guide to the activities that are permitted, controlled or not permitted within transmission line easements, please read our fact sheets:
Our commitment to engaging with landholders
TasNetworks understands that it has a responsibility to recognise and minimise the impacts transmission infrastructure has on landholders. Engaging meaningfully with landholders helps us to fully understand what these impacts are and what matters most to the landholder.
We are committed to delivering best practice engagement. Our commitment to continuous improvement is demonstrated by our contribution to the Energy Charter’s Better Practice Social Licence Guideline 2023. We have also collaborated with the Australian Energy Commission to develop a Land Agent Professional Development Course, with future courses to be delivered by the Energy Charter. Find out more about these initiatives below:
The Energy Charter’s Better Practice Social Licence Guideline
The Energy Charter is a unique coalition of like-minded energy organisations with a shared purpose and passion for customers and communities. TasNetworks is an Energy Charter Signatory and is proud to have taken part in the development of The Energy Charter’s Better Practice Social Licence Guideline 2023.
Co-developed by landholder and community representatives and electricity transmission businesses, the Guideline is the product of effective listening and strong collaboration between the agriculture and energy sectors.
The Energy Charter’s Better Practice Social Licence Guideline is critical to developing a deeper understanding of the impacts and identifying opportunities to improve outcomes for agricultural landholders.
As the owner and operator of Tasmania’s electricity transmission and distribution network, TasNetworks is committed to best practice and engaging in a way that is meaningful, fair and achieves the best outcomes for landholders, the community, the environment, Tasmania’s electricity grid and the National Electricity Market.
The Energy Charter’s Better Practice Social Licence Guideline
Land Agent Professional Development
As the key point of connection between Landholders and large transmission projects like Marinus Link and the NWTD, Land Agents play a crucial role in facilitating effective communication and collaboration.
TasNetworks recently developed a Land Agent Professional Development Course with the support of the Australian Energy Infrastructure Commission.
This national first initiative was delivered in June 2023 and brought together Land Agents working on transmission projects from across the National Electricity Market (NEM). Over three days, participants had the opportunity to share their knowledge, exchange insights, and tackle the challenges faced by Land Agents on the frontline of transmission projects.
To ensure an immersive learning experience, the course included a farm visit and interactive role play scenarios. These hands-on activities were designed to enhance the professional development of Land Agents and equip them with practical skills to navigate various situations.
Moving forward, the course will be delivered by the Energy Charter.
Rural Alive and Well Partnership
TasNetworks understands that transmission infrastructure projects can impact on the wellbeing, mental health and relationships of landholders and community members. Tasmanian rural communities and landholders may already be hosting transmission infrastructure, irrigation and a gas pipeline prior to being notified of a new transmission development - like the North West Transmission Developments project - and that these cumulative issues can have negative mental health impacts.
In 2022 TasNetworks established a community partnership with Rural Alive and Well (RAW), a solely Tasmanian not-for-profit organisation, providing free counselling and support services to individuals and communities in regional Tasmania. RAW programs address situational stressors, increase protective factors to minimise the risk of suicide and enable proactive steps towards stronger mental health and wellbeing.
TasNetworks has many touch-points with rural and remote communities throughout Tasmania and we see it as our duty to prioritise investment in the wellbeing of rural Tasmanians.
Fencing near Transmission Lines fact sheet
Transmission Line Easements fact sheet
Irrigators and Transmission Lines fact sheet
Electric and Magnetic Fields
Construction, Operation and Maintenance of Transmission Lines
North West Transmission Developments - Towers and easements map
NWTD Interactive map 2023