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Find out about Queenslands new progressive rehabilitation legislation

Industry News / Mining & Resources

Find out about Queenslands new progressive rehabilitation legislation

The Queensland Government is committed to ensuring land disturbed by mining activities is rehabilitated to a safe and stable landform that does not cause environmental harm and is able to sustain an approved post-mining land use. Land disturbed by mining activities will be rehabilitated progressively as it becomes available, to minimise the risks of environmental impacts and reduce cumulative areas of disturbed land.

The progress and outcomes of progressive rehabilitation activities will be monitored and reported on to demonstrate how successful they have been in achieving progress towards the approved post-mining landform, and to inform corrective action where required. To provide certainty about the outcomes and timing of rehabilitation, all site-specific mines will prepare a Progressive Rehabilitation and Closure Plan (PRCP).

What is a PRC Plan?

The plan will include binding, time-based milestones for actions that achieve progressive rehabilitation and will ultimately support the transition to the mine site’s future use. Disturbed land associated with mining activities is considered available for rehabilitation unless it is:

• being actively mined, or
• being used for operating mining infrastructure, or
• overlaying a probable or proven resource reserve identified for extraction in the approved PRCP within 10 years, or
• the site of built infrastructure that will be retained as a beneficial asset in the approved PRCP

Land disturbed by mining activities is considered to be rehabilitated when it can be demonstrated it is safe, stable, does not cause environmental harm, and is able to sustain the post-mining land use approved in the PRCP.

 

A PRC plan consists of 2 parts:

  1. A rehabilitation planning part
  2. PRCP schedule

As an applicant, you will submit a proposed PRC plan with a completed PRCP schedule to the administering authority. The administering authority then assesses the plan and approves the final PRCP schedule.

A PRCP schedule includes a final site design map that identifies the post-mining land uses (PMLUs) and any non-use management areas (NUMAs). The PRCP schedule also includes a table of milestones and any conditions imposed by the administering authority. Just like an EA, it is an offence for an EA holder to contravene a condition of a PRCP schedule.

 

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FAQ:

What are the mining rehabilitation reforms in QLD?

On the 14 November 2018, the Queensland Parliament saw the passing of the Mineral and Energy Resources (Financial Provisioning) (MERFP) Act 2018. This reform package is aimed at improving rehabilitation (rehab) and financial assurance outcomes for the sector that aims to deliver:

  • Improved environmental performance
  • Rehabilitation investment in the Queensland resources industry
  • Better protection of the State’s financial interests

What is a Progressive Rehabilitation and Closure (PRC) plan?

Organisations carrying out mining activity in Queensland are legally obligated to rehabilitate the land. A progressive rehabilitation and closure plan (PRC plan) is a critical element of the QLD Government's Mined Land Rehabilitation Policy.

What is the main purposes of the PRC plan?

The main purpose of the plan is to: Require the holder of an EA to plan for how and where activities will be carried out on the land in a way that maximises the progressive rehabilitation of the land to a stable condition Provide for the condition to which the holder must rehabilitate the land before the EA may be surrendered

What is a PRCP Schedule?

The PRCP schedule is approved by the administering authority and will include maps of final rehabilitation and closure outcomes for the site and tables of time-based milestones for achieving each PMLU and/or NUMA.

What is included in the PRCP schedule?

The schedule includes: rehabilitation and management milestones, milestone criteria, identification of PMLUs or NUMAs, when land becomes available for rehabilitation and available for improvement, rehabilitation areas and improvement areas, and milestone completion dates.

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