Prospecting permit

Prospecting permits can be granted for coal (pegging only) or all minerals other than coal (prospecting, hand mining or pegging).

There are 2 types of prospecting permit:

  • parcel prospecting permit (PPP) can be granted for a particular parcel of land for a term of 3 months
  • district prospecting permit (DPP) can be granted for all available land within a mining district for a term of 1–12 months. You will need the landholder's written consent before you access their land.

Permitted activities

Prospecting permits may be granted for any combination of prospecting, hand mining, or pegging a mining lease or mining claim (if marking out is required) on the available land specified in the permit. The Practice Direction 1/2016: Boundary identification for resource authorities (PDF, 361KB) outlines marking out requirements.

Hand-mining means using hand-operated tools, such as jackhammers, picks, shovels, gads, sieves and windlasses.

Environmental authorities

An environmental authority is not required. Read the small-scale mining code for environmental requirements.

Native title

Prospecting permits conditioned for 'pegging only' do not require a native title process.

Permits for hand mining or prospecting will need any native title requirements to be addressed before we grant an authority.

Landholder consent and notification

Written consent from the land owner is sometimes required before you enter a reserve or occupied land to prospect or hand mine.

You do not need land owner consent to enter land for pegging only.

Parcel prospecting permit holders must give the land owner at least 5 business days written notice before the initial entry onto their land. Use the entry notice template (PDF, 50KB) to provide written notice.

Main features of prospecting permits

Specified mineral Any mineral other than coal Coal (pegging only) or any mineral other than coal
Duration 1-12 months 3 months
Size Mining district 1 parcel, or 2 or more adjoining parcels if owned by same landholder
Renewable No No
Rent No rent payable No rent payable

Pegging: no security

Prospecting or hand mining: minimum security $1000

Pegging: no security

Prospecting or hand mining: minimum security $500

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How to apply

You can apply online through MyMinesOnline (parcel prospecting permits only) or using a hard-copy form.