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Queensland budget quiet on resources 

AMEC was disappointed to see the Queensland Budget for 2024-25 did not provide support to minerals exploration or mining; it was particularly concerning to see the Collaborative Exploration Initiative was not extended. We believe however that with the state election in October this year, we have a real opportunity to achieve commitments that will benefit our members in reducing red and green tape. AMEC will be releasing its Queensland 2024 State Election Policy Platform in due course, which provides details around our ask of government. The Platform has been developed in consultation with the AMEC Queensland Advisory Committee.  

 

Minerals, Energy and Other Legislation Amendment Bill 2024 (MEROLA Bill)  

On 12 June 2024, the Queensland Parliament passed the MEROLA Bill. The Bill brought together legislative amendments associated with multiple resources related consultation processes that had been run since the release of the Queensland Resources Industry Development Plan in June 2022.  

Key changes that impact AMEC’s members include: 

  • Implementation on the Financial Provisioning Scheme three year review  
  • Rebranding GasFields Commission Queensland to ‘Coexistence Queensland’ and expanding its functions to include the broader resources sector, and the renewable energy industry 
  • Expanding the role of the Land Access Ombudsman to provide support on a broader range of land access disputes through alternative dispute resolution pathways 
  • Empowering the Minister for Resources and Critical Minerals to decide how and when land suitable for exploration is re-released, to support critical mineral exploration in Queensland 
  • Allowing the Minister for Resources and Critical Minerals to defer or set alternative rent in exceptional circumstances, such as natural disasters 
  • Introducing a threshold-based framework for aerial surveys conducted at 1000 feet or above so these activities will no longer be considered advanced activities and resource companies will not need to provide entry notices and periodic entry reports to landholders 

The Department of Resources has committed to consult with AMEC in operationalising changes that impact our membership.  

 

AMEC member working group: Gulf Water Plan Review  

AMEC has established a working group with members to help inform our submission in response to the Gulf Water Plan’s review. The role of the working group is to provide support/review the submission we develop and data that will be useful to supporting our positions. If you would like to be included and haven’t been contacted, please contact Amy – amy.warden@amec.org.au 

 

Safety – dust monitoring  

At a recent meeting with Resources Safety and Health Queensland (RSHQ), the regulator shared that they continue to be concerned over the low dust monitoring reporting. They are also concerned about workers not being clean-shaven and PPE therefore not being effective.  

We discussed with them the possibility of the State helping to fund or carry-out monitoring due to the challenges of having hygienists come to remote sites and the associated costs. We also discussed the conversation AMEC, RSHQ and the Australian Drilling Industry Association (ADIA) had in late 2023 regarding the possibility of site-based exploration workers completing the relevant SIMTARS course to do the monitoring themselves.  

To help build a case for having RSHQ help fund dust monitoring AMEC is seeking some case examples of costs and hygienists turning down work, please contact Sarah or Kate to share these if you have them.

RSHQ asked us to share this video with members – Why we need to manage dust: Miners’ health matters (rshq.qld.gov.au)