Summary

  • A Parliamentary Select Committee has been established to inquire and report on SA’s land access arrangements concerning mining and exploration activity on agricultural land.
  • GPSA has strongly advocated for an independent review of SA’s resources law since 2017.
  • GPSA will be calling on our Mining Taskforce to inform our submission to the Committee.
  • The final report is to be tabled in November 2021, ahead of the 2022 election.

Independent inquiry into land access

A Parliamentary Select Committee has been established to inquire and report on SA’s land access arrangements concerning mining and exploration activity on agricultural land, thanks to a push from the expanded crossbench in the Lower House of State Parliament.

One of the key purposes of the Inquiry is to report on and make recommendations as to measures that should be implemented to achieve a best practice model in South Australia, that balances the rights of landowners and those seeking to access land for exploration.

This is an important opportunity to undertake a thorough and meaningful review of existing laws, independent of the department charged with both promoting and regulating the regime.

GPSA has strongly advocated for an independent review of SA’s resources law since 2017. GPSA has developed a long list of policy reforms that are yet to be enacted, and we continue to push for fairer outcomes for farmers both publicly and behind the scenes.

The Inquiry now offers the chance for individuals, community groups and industry bodies to put forward their views directly to policymakers. This is the next logical step in progressing meaningful reform in this area, being timely to shed a light on the performance of the existing arrangements in SA and consider how other jurisdictions mange the process of exploration, mining and extraction of agricultural land.

The importance of this inquiry extends to the many farming families who have been impacted by resource entities seeking access to cropping land across large areas of both the Eyre and Yorke peninsulas.

The final report is set to be tabled on 18 November 2021, ahead of the 2022 election.

GPSA will be calling on our Mining Taskforce to inform our submission to the Committee.

Terms of Reference

The Select Committee are to inquire into and report upon the following;

(a) Land access regimes as they relate to mining and mining exploration under the Mining Act 1971, the Opal Mining Act 1995 and the Petroleum and Geothermal Energy Act 2000.

(b) Such operations of the Department for Energy and Mining as may relate to, or be affected by, land access regimes;

(c) The practices of interstate and overseas jurisdictions as they relate to balancing the rights of landowners and those seeking to access land in order to explore for or exploit minerals, precious stones or regulated substances;

(d) Administrative and legislative options that may help achieve a best practice model in South Australia that balances the rights of landowners and those seeking to access land to explore for or exploit minerals, precious stones or regulated substances;

(e) Measures that should be implemented to achieve a best practice model in South Australia that balances the rights of landowners and those seeking to access land to explore for or exploit minerals, precious stones or regulated substances (to the extent that such measures are not being addressed through existing programs or initiatives); and

(f) Any other related matter

Any person or organisation wishing to make a submission to the Committee is invited to do so by COB Friday 30 April 2021.

Committee membership

  • Hon Geoff Brock
  • Mr Fraser Ellis
  • Mr Steve Murray
  • Mr Peter Treloar
  • Hon Tom Koutsantonis
  • Mr Eddie Hughes

Further details on the Committee can be found on the State Parliament website.