1 March ARELJ Recent Development- Wardens' decisions providing clarity but not advancing joy March 1, 2023 By Sally Parker ARELJ, Environment, Mining ARELJ, Mining, Wardens, TenementApplications, Regulation, WAMiningAct 0 John Southalan Barrister (WA Bar Association), Mediator (NMAS), Adjunct Professor (UWA & Murdoch) Three recent decisions of the Perth Mining Wardens have provided legal clarity regarding mining tenement applications and objections. In Azure Minerals, Warden McPhee confirmed an earlier decision of Warden Cleary, and that applications for exploration tenure are invalid without details of exploration proposed for the five years following grant. Warden McPhee also emphasised that WA Mining Wardens should not depart from another Warden’s reasoning without good cause. In Telupac Holdings, Warden Cleary refused to hear environmental objections to the proposed grant of exploration tenure partly in a national park and nature reserve. In ACN 629 923 753, Warden Cleary ordered costs against pastoralist objectors for maintaining objections, indicating increased likelihood of costs being awarded against objections “without merit”. Both Wardens provided extensive and detailed reasoning, explaining their rationale but also referring to the role of agencies in ensuring compliance with WA’s Mining Act. In late December 2022, WA’s Auditor General released a report identifying deficiencies in how agencies regulate compliance with conditions under that Act. While some ambiguity remains, unless/until there is any contrary direction from WA’s Supreme Court, applicants and objectors have greater clarity of approaches by WA’s Mining Wardens. Member Login Required to Access Recent Development Read More Related Articles ARELJ Recent Development- Transitioning Section 18 Aboriginal Heritage Act 1972 Consents Under the Aboriginal Cultural Heritage Act 2021 of Western Australia ARELJ Recent Development- Electricity Infrastructure Investment ACT 2020 (NSW): Key Provisions and Legal Issues for Project Investors to Consider ARELJ - Recent Development - Principles for Exploration and Extraction Rights ARELJ Recent Development - Industrial Manslaughter in the Queensland Resources Sector Recent environmental cases in Australia Two recent cases involving environmental actions provide some guidance on how the law and Ministerial decision making can apply. Recently two judicial review proceedings were dismissed by the Federal Court. The case was brought by Environmental Justice Australia and has been called the Living Wonders case. The case sought to challenge the Federal Environment Minister’s failure to adequately consider climate change risk when assessing two coal mine expansions under s78 of the Environmental Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999. FORREST AND FORREST PTY LTD AND MINISTER FOR ABORIGINAL AFFAIRS  WASAT 28 Western Australia’s State Administrative Tribunal (SAT) has rejected a review, by Forrest & Forrest Pty Ltd, against the refusal of consent to impact an Aboriginal site in constructing weirs across the Ashburton River. A unanimous three-member panel published its decision in April 2023. SAT’s decision and reasoning has direct significance and use for anyone involved in processes for a s 18 consent under the Aboriginal Heritage Act 1972 and broader relevance for the law around protection of Aboriginal heritage in Western Australia. With the WA Government announcing the reversal of recent statutory changes and a return to the 1972 legislation, SAT’s decision has increased relevance. Showing 0 Comment Comments are closed.