Changes to resource authority permit conditions

You can apply to vary a relinquishment condition or work program condition of your resource authority. However, the ability to vary the condition of a permit (that is, an exploration permit for minerals or coal or a mineral development licence) depends on whether it was granted before or after the Natural Resources and Other Legislation Amendment Act 2019 (NROLA).

Pre-NROLA exploration permits

Exploration permits granted prior to 25 May 2020 are subject to the variation provisions under section 141 of the Minerals Resources Act 1989 (MRA) that were in place prior to this date, until the first renewal.

You may apply to vary the work program or relinquishment condition. There is no pre-condition for lodging a variation.

Post-NROLA exploration permits

Exploration permits granted after 25 May 2020 are subject to NROLA applied pre-conditions.

You can apply for a variation only in the following instances.

An exceptional event affecting the existing permit

To determine whether your circumstance is an exceptional event, refer to the Operational policy – Exceptional circumstances and exceptional events.

If your circumstance meets the criteria, follow the variation lodgement process. Use the application to vary the conditions of an exploration permit form (PDF, 150KB) or apply directly through MyMinesOnline.

Circumstances arising from the existing permit forming part of a project

The Department of Resources allows for project-based administration of permits through the Operational policy – Project-based exploration administration. This allows for offsetting conditions against other tenure within the project. Exploration permits awarded through a competing process cannot be part of a project in the first term.

Prior to lodging a variation, you must receive approval for project status.

Post-NROLA, exploration permits have a relinquishment condition of 50% after 5 years. The condition is not able to be varied, except where, as a part of a project, the relinquishment condition is offset on another permit.

The work program condition can only be varied because of an exceptional event or if the condition is being offset on another exploration permit as part of a project. Where a condition has not been met and a variation cannot be lodged, a holder can provide justification for not meeting the condition at the time of renewal and the department will assess whether the justification was merited.

Apply for project status

Applying for a variation of a permit

To lodge a variation of conditions application, use the application to vary the conditions of an exploration permit form (PDF, 150KB) or apply directly through MyMinesOnline.

For EPMs only: Variations related to a project should include an updated Exploration permit for minerals project status workbook.