Mining operators across NSW will be required to show their plans for progressive rehabilitation and to report annually on rehabilitation outcomes, with the NSW Nationals in the state government introducing a series of reforms.
Deputy Premier and Resources Minister John Barilaro said several amendments have been made to the Mining Regulation 2016 to modernise the framework and to ensure that progressive rehabilitation is carried out throughout the life span of every mine in the state.
“After extensive public consultation, new standard mining lease conditions for rehabilitation will now be introduced on all mining leases, giving the industry a clearer and more consistent framework to comply with,” Mr Barilaro said.
“Previously, a mining operation may have been subject to several different rehabilitation and environmental management conditions, making compliance, monitoring, and regulation complex.
“These changes will apply to all mining leases held in NSW, and will help drive rehabilitation outcomes that have communities, the environment and the mining sector at their heart.
“These reforms will strengthen the rehabilitation framework, encouraging best practice rehabilitation and ultimately ensure that mining lease holders progressively rehabilitate mine sites over the course of their project, and not just at closure.”
The new changes will require all mining leaseholders to:
- prepare a management plan to identify and achieve rehabilitation outcomes
- carry out rehabilitation risk assessments
- develop a program to demonstrate an approach to progressive rehabilitation
- make information about rehabilitation publicly available
- report annually on rehabilitation performance.
Mr Barilaro said the changes build on the government’s commitment to improve regulation in the mining sector and the work of the NSW Resources Regulator to promote accountability and improve understanding of rehabilitation requirements.
“Providing more detailed public reporting and case studies will help to improve the transparency and understanding of mine rehabilitation. These changes will provide peace of mind to many,” Mr Barilaro said.
For further information visit www.resourcesregulator.nsw.gov.au