NSW Department of Planning and Environment

The state policy which governs the way that mining, petroleum production and extractive material resource proposals are assessed and developed in NSW is called the State Environmental Planning Policy (Mining, Petroleum Production and Extractive Industries) 2007 (Mining SEPP).

The Mining SEPP aims to manage and sustainably develop these resources for the social and economic benefit of the community.

Mining prohibitions

Rocky Hill Coal site open cut mining prohibition

Amendments to the Mining SEPP commenced on 26 June 2020 to:

Jerrys Plains (Drayton South) open cut mining prohibition

Amendments to the Mining SEPP were made on 22 December 2017 to prohibit open cut mining on the Drayton South exploration licence near Jerrys Plains in the Upper Hunter.

Petroleum prohibitions

Amendments to the Mining SEPP were made on 17 September 2021.

The changes prohibit petroleum exploration, petroleum production and petroleum related works within 16 local government areas in the Central West and Orana, New England North West, and Hunter regions. The changes do not apply to areas that could support future extensions to the Narrabri Gas Project.

The new rules are in line with the NSW Government’s Future of Gas Statement and the decision to reduce the areas where gas exploration is allowed.

Mining SEPP amendment (2015)

On 31 August 2015 the Planning Minister announced the State’s mining policy would be changed to provide a more balanced framework for decision making.

These changes came into effect Wednesday 2 September 2015.

Voluntary Land Acquisition and Mitigation Policy

The Voluntary Land Acquisition and Mitigation Policy (VLAMP) describes the NSW Government’s policy for the management of noise and dust (particulate matter) impacts from state significant mining, petroleum and extractive industry developments.

Clause 12A of the State Environmental Planning Policy (Mining, Petroleum Production and Extractive Industries) 2007 requires consent authorities to consider any applicable provisions of the VLAMP before determining an application for consent for state significant development for the purposes of mining, petroleum production or extractive industry.

The VLAMP was recently revised.

Social Impact Assessment Guideline

The Department has developed a social impact assessment guideline for state significant resource projects (mining, petroleum production and extractive industry development).

Preliminary Regional Issues Assessment for Potential Coal and Petroleum Exploration Release Areas (PRIA)

The PRIA is part of the Government’s broader Strategic Release Framework that allows for the controlled, strategic release and competitive allocation of coal and petroleum (CSG) prospecting titles in NSW.

View the Coal and petroleum exploration assessment.

Independent Panel for Mining in the Catchment

In February 2018, the NSW Government established the Independent Expert Panel for Mining in the Catchment to provide expert advice to the department on the impact of mining activities in the Greater Sydney Water Catchment Special Areas, with a particular focus on the risks to the quantity of water in the Catchment.

The Panel submitted its final report in October 2019. Following the NSW Government’s adoption of all the panel’s 50 recommendations, the department has established a new panel to provide Government with access to independent expert advice.

Read more about the Independent Expert Panel for Mining in the Catchment.

Resources Advisory Forum

The Resources Advisory Forum has been established to provide advice to the Department on a range of complex, state-wide issues relating to resource assessments in NSW.

The inaugural meeting was held on 28 October 2015, bringing together expert environment and community groups with industry, academia and local government to discuss issues around resource planning and assessment in NSW.

Resources Advisory Forum documents

Meeting summaries


Further information

Telephone: 1300 305 695

Page last updated: 21/07/2022