Response plan to bring mining approvals back on track

Significant increase in applications for Programme of Work and Mining Proposals
Date: Friday, 10 June 2022

Approvals Response Plan will prioritise assessment of mining applications

Low risk Mine Closure Plans will be deferred for 12 months

Mines and Petroleum Minister Bill Johnston has endorsed a plan to accelerate exploration and mining approvals following a significant increase in applications this financial year.

The Approvals Response Plan, developed by the Department of Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety, will focus on prioritising the assessment and approvals of Programmes of Work applications, Mining Proposals and Native Vegetation Clearing Permits.

Programme of Work applications proposing exploration activities have increased by 42 per cent during the period with 450 applications received in March 2022, while Mining Proposals have increased by 10 per cent.

The Approvals Response Plan will redirect a number of regulatory functions and resources to support the assessment processes.

It will defer all revisions or post-approval Mine Closure Plan submissions required under the Mining Act 1978 which are considered lower risk, for a 12-month period from July 1, 2022 to June 2023, and individual companies will be notified accordingly.

Comments attributed to Mines and Petroleum Minister Bill Johnston:

“The high number of mining applications is another clear indication that Western Australia’s resources sector is growing from strength to strength.

“Ongoing responsible and sustainable exploration and mining activities are essential to maintaining the sector’s strong performance.

“The Approval Response Plan’s redirection of departmental resources will give the industry confidence in the timeframe for key resource sector approvals.

“Exploration approvals will be prioritised to bring them back on track by the end of September 2022. Other approvals will meet their timeframe targets by the end of this year.”