Monitoring and enforcement

Both governments and mining companies have responsibility for monitoring the impacts of mining and CSG activities on the environment. You can also monitor the impacts of activities on the environment, such as water and air quality.

Before reporting suspected breaches of environmental laws you will require evidence. It is also important to remember that the law contains certain exceptions and defences to offences. The most common defence is that a person has a permit or licence to take the action which would otherwise be an offence, such as an environment protection licence (a licence to pollute). If you are unsure about whether an action is an offence or not, call the Environment Line on 131 555.

National and State enforcement authorities can issue stop work notices in many cases where unauthorised activities are occurring that threaten harm to the environment.

    • Carrying out mining or CSG activities without authorisation from the Division of Resources and Energy, or breaching a condition of an exploration or mining title. A title to explore or mine minerals or CSG must be held before any activities can be carried out, and conditions can be imposed on these titles. You can access NSW Titles, the titles mapping system for minerals and CSG in NSW, to see all titles in NSW.
    • Carrying out mining CSG activities on an exempted area (e.g. a recreation reserve, park, or permanent common) without consent from the Minister for Resources and Energy.
    • Causing pollution without the required licence, or polluting over the authorised level. Click here for more information about pollution.
    • Taking an action that is likely to have a significant impact on a nationally listed migratory species.
    • Taking an action that is likely to have a significant impact on a place that is listed on the World, Commonwealth, or National heritage lists.

Under certain environmental laws, any person has the right to bring proceedings in a Court to remedy or restrain a breach. In NSW, this is mainly to the Land and Environment Court. For breaches of national environmental law, it is the Federal Court. See How can I have my say? for more information. You should contact the EDO NSW Environmental Law Line to request some initial legal advice if you would like to take this step.