AgForce is urging landholders to be aware of new laws taking effect from today that reinstate community objection rights to mining projects, and allow landholders to ‘opt out’ of conduct and compensation agreements with resources companies.
AgForce resources spokesman Wayne Newton says the laws taking effect from today are part of a large suite of reforms developed over the past two years relating to how mining companies interact with landholders and the community.
“Coal seam gas and resources developments are an important issue for landholders and will continue to be into the future, so we need landholders to be as informed as possible in order to protect their properties, their businesses and their livelihoods,”
“Changes taking effect today include a 50m buffer zone around key infrastructure such as principal stockyards, bores and artesian wells, dams and artificial water storages connected to a water supply; and a 200m buffer zone around permanent buildings including places of residence.”
Mr Newton also says there’s a significant change in that landholders can now choose to sign an ‘opt out agreement’ rather than negotiate a conduct and compensation agreement (CCA) with a resource company.
“While the State Government says this change is intended to ‘streamline the existing negotiation process’, AgForce strongly encourages landholders considering an opt out agreement to ensure they are fully aware of the impact of these agreements on their rights and responsibilities.”
“Landholders need to be aware opt out agreements are not mandatory, must be accompanied by a special information form, be made in the prescribed form, are subject to a 10 day cooling off period and do not negate a company’s liability to compensate an eligible claimant.”
AgForce is urging landholders to visit the Department of Natural Resources and Mines website to inform themselves about the changes, or alternatively contact the AgForce CSG Project team or the CSG Compliance Unit.”
Further information about the changes to Queensland’s land access framework is available at https://www.dnrm.qld.gov.au/our-department/corporate-information/policies-initiatives/mining-resources/legislative-reforms/mqra