The below article is by Laura Hogarth, Lawyer, Creevey Russell Lawyers.
Legislation governing land access for CSG and other petroleum activities (Petroleum and Gas (Production and Safety) Act 2004, (PAG Act)) and corresponding legislation governing land access for mining activities (Mineral Resources Act 1989 (MRA)), will be amended by the Mineral and Energy Resources (Common Provisions) Bill 2014, which passed on 9 September 2014.
When the Mineral &Energy Resources Act 2014 (M&ER Act) commences this year, it will affect landholders’ rights in respect to negotiating or enforcing a Conduct and Compensation Agreement (CCA) with a resource company.
If you have a CCA in place for ongoing activities:
An existing CCA (‘continuing agreement’) is still a CCA under the M&ER Act and the terms of the CCA (eg., indemnity clause, waiver of entry notice requirements, conduct provisions, etc.) continue in full force.
If you are negotiating a CCA now for proposed activities:
If you have already received a ‘Notice of Intention to Negotiate’ from a resource company, commencing the mandatory negotiation process, you can continue to negotiate a CCA under the PAG Act (for petroleum activities) or MRA (for mining activities) as if they were not affected by the new M&ER Act 2014.
The new restricted entry notice provisions (replacing the 600m rule) and other changes only apply to new resource authorities applied for and granted after the commencement of the M&ER Act. You will not be affected by the changes to the land access negotiation framework. Entry notices and consent to entry already given before the M&ER Act commences will continue to be valid.
If you start negotiating a CCA down the track:
You will need advice as to whether the old or new framework applies in your circumstances. For now, the PAG Act and MRA will continue to operate in conjunction with the M&ER Act. However, the provisions are slowly being transitioned into the M&ER Act, so further changes and new regulations could be made between now and when you receive a notice of entry or notice of intention to negotiate.
Please see our more detailed articles summarising the changes made to the land access framework for petroleum and mining on private land.
You can also read more about the changes and the policy objectives behind them in the explanatory notes to the M&ER Bill, on the DNRM website about the Modernising Queensland Resource Acts Program (MQRA) or in the Agriculture, Resources and Environment Committee’s inquiry report to Parliament (AREC Report).
Click here for more information.
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