About the awards

Golden Gecko Header Image

To register your interest for the 2018 Awards for Excellence, please send your contact details to excellenceawards@dmirs.wa.gov.au.

Key dates

8 February  2017 Entries open.
10 April 2017 Entries close.
April 2017 Applications reviewed to determine eligibility.
May 2017 Entrants informed whether their submission has been accepted.
June – July 2017 Assessment Panel undertakes an assessment of each submission by inspecting the operation.
August 2017 Assessment Panel provides a report to the Selection Committee, who then determines the award recipients.
October 2017 DMIRS Awards for Excellence Night held in Perth, incorporating the Golden Gecko and the new Community Partnership Awards



About the awards

Geckos are among the last species to return to an area after a land disturbance such as mining, and their presence indicates a return to a healthy functioning ecosystem. As such the gecko was chosen as a symbol of environmental performance.

The Department of Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety instigated the Awards in 1992 to recognise excellence and leadership, and acknowledge the outstanding contribution recipients have made to develop WA's resources in a responsible manner. By recognising these advances and innovations in environmental practice, the Department seeks to encourage further improvement by raising the level of industry standards and to develop and maintain community confidence in the sustainability of mineral and petroleum activities.

The Minister for Mines and Petroleum presents award recipients with a bronze Golden Gecko Award sculpture crafted by local artist George Kosturkov. A Certificate of Merit may also be awarded to recipients making determined efforts towards achieving excellence and leadership in environmental performance. In addition, the names of all award and certificate recipients are recorded on a perpetual sculpture displayed in the department's head office in Perth.

Why should I enter the Golden Gecko awards?

The Golden Gecko Awards are an opportunity for you to be recognised for leading practice and innovation in environmental management, and to share your experiences with government, industry and the community. Assessment is merit based so there is no competition between entries.

Receiving a Golden Gecko Award also helps to build the reputation of being a responsible corporate citizen with a responsible attitude to the environment. Just participating in the Golden Gecko Awards process has been known to internally increase awareness and interest across an organisation in environmental work.

What makes the Golden Gecko awards special?

The Golden Gecko Awards are highly respected by the resource sector in Western Australia because it has a rigorous assessment process.

The process consists of:

  • assessment of the written applications
  • a site visit to verify the application.

There are two separate panels that assess the applications:

  • assessment panel
  • Selection Committee.

Recipients of a Golden Gecko may use the logo to promote their project. The Golden Gecko Awards are nationally recognised awards. The Golden Gecko Awards are specific to the Western Australian resource sector.

How do we enter?

Entries should be submitted using the Online Form available on the right hand side of this page. (between February and April). You will be required to upload your 10-page submission and fill in an entry form. A confirmation that your entry has been submitted successfully will be sent to your email address.

When is the closing date for 2017?

The 2017 Golden Gecko Awards nominations closed on 10 April 2017.

How much information do we have to provide in the written application?

Your submission should include sufficient details for the assessment panel and Selection Committee to assess the submission on its merits. It should contain:

  • a brief description of the operation/project
  • an explanation of the environmental aspects involved
  • how these aspects were addressed
  • results of the actions taken to achieve environmental excellence and leadership in responsible resource development.

Innovation, leadership and environmental excellence are seen as important criteria and should be emphasised where appropriate in the submission. For ease of assessment, please address the 'specific criteria' in your submission.

The submission should show why your project stands apart from other operations/projects. Where possible, it should be supported with pictures, plans, diagrams and other details which demonstrate tangible outcomes. The maximum page limit for your entry is 10-pages.

How long should my application be?

For ease of preparation and assessment, please keep your submission clear and concise, Each of the selection criteria must be answered within the ten-page limit. This limit includes all pictures, diagrams, plans, graphs and tables. Videos can be uploaded separately.

Do entrants compete against each other?

Entries are judged against the Golden Gecko criteria; not each other. There may be more than one Golden Gecko presented each year as it is not possible to compare two completely different activities (such as a small mine prospecting activity and a major offshore petroleum development). They may both receive a Golden Gecko in the same year because they are considered best practice in their field and have gone above and beyond their regulatory requirements.

Is my entry automatically accepted?

No, submissions must first pass through a screening process to ensure they are relevant to the Golden Gecko criteria. The individual/organisation will be advised in May if their submission is accepted.

Why is there an 'assessment panel' and a 'Selection Committee'?

The 'assessment panel' and the 'Selection Committee' provide two different roles to the Golden Gecko process.

The assessment panel consists of representatives from key government organisations who have specialised technical knowledge in environmental regulation, mineral and petroleum resources management, native vegetation rehabilitation or rangeland management. Members from the panel participate in site visits to verify the written application provided by the Golden Gecko entrant. The panel presents a site visit report and provides technical advice to the Selection Committee. The Selection Committee consists of four independent persons from the resource, community and environment sectors. The Selection Committee selects and recommends the award recipients to the Minister for Mines and Petroleum.

Do we need to host a site visit?

Most entrants host site visits as an opportunity to showcase their submission. They are not mandatory but are highly recommended. If a visit is not possible, relevant or desirable, you may choose to deliver a presentation to members of the Assessment Panel in Perth.

What do I need to do to prepare for a site visit?

Site visits usually entail an initial meeting on site to provide the opportunity for questions. You may wish to:

  • introduce key staff/managers. Introduce community members that were involved in the project (if appropriate)
  • deliver a presentation to summarise the project
  • display appropriate management plans and relevant materials
  • conduct a physical tour of the operation that was submitted for the Award
  • conduct a tour of the remaining site (if appropriate).

Please note that the Golden Gecko coordinator will liaise thoroughly with the entrant prior to a site visit.

How long should a site visit take?

The length of the visit depends on what you are showcasing. Visits can range from half a day to two days, depending on the project.

Who attends the site visit?

Members from the Assessment Panel attend site visits and on some occasions a member from the Selection Committee may attend. Usually three to five representatives will attend each visit.

Who from my organisation should participate in the site visit?

Staff who have been involved in the project and who can provide answers to questions from the Assessment Panel should be present at the site visits. Commitment from management is an important aspect of the Awards, therefore having a senior manager available is also beneficial.

When is the awards night?

Date to be confirmed.

Who can attend the awards night?

The Golden Gecko Awards night is open to all of the resources industry.

When will we find out if we are a finalist for receiving a Golden Gecko or Certificate of Merit?

All entries that are 'accepted' have the possibility of receiving a Golden Gecko or Certificate of Merit. Award recipients will not know if they will receive an Award until it is announced on the Awards night by the Minister for Mines and Petroleum.

What does our organisation have to do in preparation for the awards night?

Recipients of a Golden Gecko or a Certificate of Merit will be interviewed on stage so please ensure the person collecting the award is highly familiar with the project and has the ability to answer questions from the compare. It is also advisable to have an acceptance speech ready.

Contact details

Should you have any questions, please contact:

Golden Gecko Awards Coordinator
100 Plain Street
Phone: +61 8 9222 3102
Email: golden.gecko@dmirs.wa.gov.au