Transfer an environmental authority

Use our forms and fees finder for information on applying for a new environmental authority (EA) or managing your existing EAs.

You can apply to transfer an EA for a prescribed activity, but not for an EA for a resource activity.

This is because an EA for a resource activity attaches to the resource tenure and transfers automatically when the resource tenure is transferred.

The business that you will be transferring the tenure and EA to must be a suitable operator.

Transfer an EA for a prescribed ERA

You may wish to transfer your EA in some situations. For example, if you sell a business that includes an EA, you will need to transfer the EA to the new business owner. Also, a transfer will be required when an EA has joint holders and:

  • an existing joint holder wants to cease being a holder
  • or
  • a new joint holder is added.

For an EA holder to transfer EAs for prescribed environmentally relevant activities (ERAs) to another person, the EA holder will need to make a transfer application.

Requirements of a transfer application

To make a transfer application you must submit the completed request to transfer environmental authority holder(s) (ESR/2015/1718) (DOCX, 189KB) to the administering authority along with the correct fee.

Transfer to a suitable operator

The most important part of the transfer application is to demonstrate that the proposed new holder of the EA is registered as a suitable operator. This is because an EA transfer application can only be refused if the proposed holder is not a registered suitable operator.

Where all or part of the operation is being transferred, the new holder may wish to apply in advance for registration as a suitable operator by:

  • completing the application online through Connect
  • or
  • requesting the form Application to be a registered suitable operator (ESR/2015/1771) by emailing palm@des.qld.gov.au or phoning 1300 130 372 (and selecting option 4). Submit the form to the Department of Environment and Science (DES), using the postal details supplied on the form. This application can also be included with the transfer application.

Inform land owners of transfer

In some instances, the holder of the EA may not own the land where their operation occurs. In these instances, if the transfer application is approved, the new holder of the EA is required to inform the owners of the land on which the activity takes place that they are the new holder.

This is a requirement that is generally covered by the commercial arrangements between parties for the lease of the land. Because the EA may involve a notifiable activity (activities with the potential to cause land contamination), it is essential that the land owners are aware of who is carrying out an activity on their land.

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