The Queensland Parliament has passed legislation that ensures more than 900 of the state’s historic mining tenures remain valid.
According to Resources Minister Scott Stewart, the Resources and Other Legislation Amendment Bill 2021 will clarify administrative aspects of historic mining and petroleum leases.
Stewart said the legislation clarified those leases were valid and always had been valid.
“The legislation will provide certainty to stakeholders and ensure existing rights and interests are maintained,” he said.
“Over the past year of the pandemic, the resources sector has continued to employ an average of almost 80,000 Queenslanders and provide critical business opportunities for suppliers, particularly in our regional communities.
“The Parliament has ensured the resources companies that hold these tenures can continue to operate with confidence.”
Parliament also approved amendments that allow petroleum production leases to continue in force until a decision is made on renewing them.
“If a company has applied to renew a production lease before it expires, the lease remains valid while a decision is made on the renewal,” Stewart said.
The Bill also continues the ability of four authorities to prospect (ATP), and their production lease applications, in the Lake Eyre Basin.
Under current legislation, these ATPs would expire on November 1, along with the production lease applications.
“These amendments give government the time to make decisions without putting any additional onus on government to approve applications,” Stewart said.
The Bill also contained amendments deferring statutory position legislation.
The independent Commissioner for Resources Health and Safety has established a working group to work through matters raised by a number of medium-tier coal mining companies, regarding the implementation of these provisions.