Progress on reforms
On 14 November 2018, the Queensland Parliament passed the Mineral and Energy Resources (Financial Provisioning) Bill 2018 (the Act). The Act replaces existing financial assurance requirements with the Financial Provisioning Scheme (the Scheme). The Act also amends the Environmental Protection Act 1994 (EP Act) to require companies to develop Progressive Rehabilitation and Closure Plans.
Passage of the Act completes the first major step of the Government’s broad reforms to improve rehabilitation of mined land on a progressive basis, rather than at the end of a mine’s life. Information on the rehabilitation reforms can be found on the Department of Environment and Science website.
Replacing existing financial assurance requirements with the Scheme will reduce the financial risk to Government in the event a holder of a resource authority or small scale mining tenure (holder) fails to meet their environmental and rehabilitation obligations. Over time, abandoned mines will be rehabilitated and rehabilitation techniques will be improved through grants provided from the Scheme’s Financial Provisioning Fund.
While this major milestone has been met, further reforms are still occurring. The final reform discussion paper on Managing residual risks in Queensland has been released for public comment. Please see the Managing residual risks in Queensland paragraph and submission below for further information and on how to provide a submission.
In addition, issues outlined in previous discussion papers by the Department of Natural Resources, Mines and Energy on associated risks and proposed solutions, and the State’s abandoned mines legacy, continue to be progressed. Further information on these initiatives will be made available once the appropriate policy approvals have been obtained.
More information is available:
- for rehabilitation reforms at https://www.ehp.qld.gov.au/management/env-policy-legislation/mining-rehabilitation-reforms.html