Last updated Thursday 14 May 2020
COVID-19: latest updates for stakeholders
Thursday 14 May 2020
COVID-19 update for South Australia's resources sector
Early moves by the sector to coordinate its response to COVID-19 has allowed essential operations within the sector to continue - and the sustained effort being made has been recognised by the South Australian Government.
This update from the Chief Executive, Department for Energy and Mining covers:
- updates on the conduct of exploration
- the need to remain engaged with Aboriginal communities and Native Title representatives
- update to the Cross Border Travel Direction - new requirement to keep and retain records of close contacts of those travelling on an ad hoc basis in addition to FIFO workers
- asymptomatic COVID-19 testing trial for inbound FIFO workers
- release of a State Infrastructure Strategy for infrastructure development in South Australia
- new energy legislation
Read the Chief Executive's latest update:
- Read as HTML COVID-19 update for South Australia's resourcers sector (HTML)
- Download as PDF COVID-19 update for South Australia's resources sectors (PDF 445KB)
The World Health Organisation has declared the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) a pandemic with containment measures disrupting business activity around the world.
The Department for Energy and Mining (DEM) is well prepared to manage the response to this pandemic, relying on a SA Health strategy that was specifically prepared well in advance of the COVID-19 outbreak.
DEM's containment response will be continuously reviewed to remain consistent with updated Government advice and policy.
On this page
Information for stakeholders
The Government of South Australia has identified the energy and mining sectors as key industries essential for the ongoing economic activity of the state. Accordingly, it is critical the Department for Energy and Mining continues to support these businesses to continue operations as far as practical in the current circumstances.
The department is liaising with our energy and mining stakeholders to understand their business continuity plans to avoid and minimise any disruption to the delivery of essential infrastructure and services to the South Australian community.
In line with public health advice, the Department for Energy and Mining is moving to electronic means of engagement within the agency and with our external stakeholders, and continues to keep the channels of communication open as the nationwide response to containing the COVID-19 virus evolves.
The high-level of cooperation the Department has experienced throughout the ongoing health emergency is appreciated and DEM's Chief Executive, Dr Paul Heithersay, will continue to keep the energy and mining resources sectors updated as new information comes to hand.
Previous updates for South Australia's resources sector
Friday 1 May 2020: Chief Executive industry update
Information on planning for maintenaince shutdowns, the work DEM has been doing with the Australian Border Force to clarify the process of importing international expertise if required for emergency management, swab testing of FIFO workforces, the COVIDSafe app, and thoughts on the road to economic recovery.
- Read as HTML: Chief Executive's industry update for South Australia's resources sectors (HTML)
- Download as PDF: Chief Executive's industry update for South Australia's resources sectors (PDF)
Wednesday 15 April 2020: SA Health briefing for industry
- Read as HTML: COVID-19 industry update for South Australia's energy and mining sectors (HTML)
- Download as PDF: COVID-19 industry update for South Australia's energy and mining sectors (PDF)
Wednesday 15 April: Managing supply risks - guidance and tools for resource companies
The Minerals Council of Australia and the South Australian Chamber of Mines and Energy and their member companies have developed two documents for use by the resources sector to further promote the operationalising of national protocols as they navigate the restrictions required to contain the spread of the COVID-19 virus.
The Managing Supply Risks document provides practical guidance to resource companies to ensure supply risks to business critical services and products are identified, assessed and managed. The Essential Supplier Letter template is a tool for companies to use if suppliers seek or require confirmation of their 'essential status' to the resources industry.
The Department for Energy and Mining encourages essential industries in South Australia to use the guide and template letter to assist state authorities to maintain the restrictions while minimising the disruption to critical business operations.
More information is available from the South Australian Chamber of Mines and Energy (SACOME) website
Saturday 4 April 2020: Chief Executive update or mining, quarrying, oil, gas and energy sectors
- Read as HTML: Chief Executive's update for the mining, quarrying, oil, gas and energy sectors (HTML)
- Download as PDF: Chief Executive's update for the mining, quarrying, oil, gas and energy sectors (PDF)
Includes updates on:
- Critical work and reduced staff movements
- Submission of plans to SA Health
- Fee relief under the Mining and Petroleum Acts
- FIFO/DIDO workers returning to South Australia
- Evidence for workers in transit
- Quarantine for inbound workers
- Adelaide Airport exposures
- Clarity for mineral explorers
Friday 3 April 2020: Fee relief for COVID19-hit resources sector
The South Australian Government has deferred costs linked to exploration and licence fees for the minerals and petroleum sectors with the announcement of:
- an immediate deferral of mineral exploration licence fees and annual petroleum and geothermal licence fees due in the next six months (now not due until 31 December 2020)
- a 12-month waiver of committed expenditure for all mineral exploration holders
- an expansion of allowable expenditures towards minimum Petroleum Retention Licence requirements during a period of low oil prices
Wednesday 1 April 2020: Cross-travel and social distancing policies
COVID-19 update for South Australia's energy and mining resources sectors from the Chief Executive, Department for Energy and Mining: recommended industry response to the cross-travel directions and social distancing policies rolled out in South Australia is outlined in the following video.
Sunday 29 March 2020: Non-essential movements
Non-essential movements that result in unnecessary exposure pathways must stop
Saturday 28 March 2019: Quarantine restrictions
New restrictions on international travellers into South Australia: for people who are returning from international travel back into South Australia - 14 days quarantine in the state you arrive in, if you then travel to South Australia, another 14 days self-quarantine in South Australia.
- More information on the SA Police website
- Read the direction in full Emergency Management (Cross Border Travel No 2) (COVID-19) Direction 2020
Friday 27 March 2020: Cross-border travel arrangements
From South Australian Department for Energy and Mining and Queensland Gas Inspectorate
From Chief Executive, South Australian Department for Energy and Mining
- Read DEM Chief Executives message 27 March 2020 (HTML)
- Downnload DEM Chief Executive's message 27 March 2020 (PDF)
Tuesday 24 March 2020: Measures for controlling COVIC-19 transmission
- Read DEM Chief Executive's message 24 March 2020 (HTML)
- Download DEM Chief Executive's message 24 March 2020 (PDF)
Access to South Australia Drill Core Reference Library
In line with the Department for Energy and Mining's containment response to restrict the spread of the coronavirus, the Drill Core reference Library will be closed until further notice.
Requests for core inspections will not be accepted until further notice. Any inspections that have been been booked will need to be cancelled or postponed, and companies will be advised when restrictions are no longer in place.
Keeping our staff and the working environment safe
All DEM employees are taking measures to reduce potential exposure to the virus and to maintain the health and wellbeing of the department's staff and their families.
These measures include:
- Implementing staff working from home rosters while ensuring critical functions are maintained
- Guidance on appropriate social distancing, limiting meeting room capacities and providing alternatives to face-to-face meetings using Skype for Business and Microsoft teams
- Cancellation of all business travel
- An obligation for employees to report any recent travel and the results of any testing for COVID-19
- Adopting a self-isolation policy following SA Health guidelines
- Increasing daily cleaning services at our offices including meeting room tables, IT equipment, light switches, door handles and lift buttons and other high use surfaces
- Encouraging good hygiene practices, including the provision of hand sanitiser and cleaning agents throughout the offices
Conferences and events
Global concerns about the pandemic and the disruption to travel due to self-isolation policies has prompted DEM to review its role in organising and participating in conferences and events.
Copper to the World 2020 Conference
DEM has postponed the June 2020 conference and masterclass.
Updates, advice and information for South Australians about COVID-19 can be found on SA Health's:
South Australian Government
State-based COVID-19 information can be accessed from:
- a dedicated website sa.gov.au/covid-19 (includes Emergency Declaration and directions, business information including financial support, and frequently asked questions)
- the South Australia COVID-19 Information Line 1800 253 787 (open 8.00 am to 8.00 pm, 7 days a week)
Department for Energy and Mining
If you have any queries regarding the work of the Department in relation to the COVID-19 outbreak please email DEM.firstname.lastname@example.org