Small-scale mining code

Projects that have a relatively low environmental impact and meet the eligibility criteria for a small-scale mining activity do not need an environmental authority and can operate under the Small-scale mining code (PDF, 206KB).

If you already have an environmental authority and meet the criteria, you can apply to surrender your environmental authority when you renew your resource authority, or at any other time.

Miners operating under the code must follow its guidelines and mandatory conditions, as well as comply with the general environmental duty of the Environmental Protection Act 1994.

Eligibility criteria for small-scale mining code

Mining activities carried out under the resource authorities shown in the table below are eligible.

Note that activities cannot occur:

Mining activities eligible for EA exemption

Resource authority Mineral mined Mining activities Area of authority
Prospecting permit Any Any Any
Mining claim Corundum, gemstones or other precious stones Machine or hand-mining 20ha or less
No more than 5ha can be disturbed at any time
Exploration permit Minerals other than coal Any 4 sub-blocks or less
No more than 0.1ha can be disturbed at any time

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