Amendments to the Mining Act 1971 and the new Mining Regulations 2020 came into operation on 1 January 2021.

Minerals Regulatory Guidelines MG13 Mineral exploration reporting and MG18 Drill core and geological sample submission have been updated to reflect changes to the exploration regulatory framework.

The statutory requirement for the submission of data obtained during mineral exploration ensures this data can be effectively captured to ensure future availability to the exploration industry.

The data must be submitted in digital format and in accordance with the Australian requirements for the submission of digital exploration data.

Tenement holders have a statutory requirement to:

  • submit reports and samples for exploration reporting on mineral tenements in South Australia
  • ensure integrity of data
  • comply with South Australian Government policies pursuant to the Mining Act 1971 and Mining Regulations 2020.

These requirements are in place to ensure that:

  • exploration progress can be assessed in accordance with licence conditions
  • data obtained in the course of exploration can be effectively captured to ensure future availability to the exploration industry.

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Annual activity (AA) summary

Changes to the Mining Act 1971 and Mining Regulations 2020 came into effect on 1 January 2021.

The current statutory requirement, pursuant to the Mining Act 1971, to submit an annual expenditure report (AER) has been replaced with an annual activity summary (AA summary).

The AA summary forms part of the annual technical report but will be required to be submitted on an individual basis based on the anniversary date of the tenement.

An AA summary must be completed and lodged online using the annual activity summary form:

Email report reminders will be sent to the tenement holder or nominated authorised person on the anniversary date, stating that the summary is due in 60 days.

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Mineral exploration reporting guidelines

Minerals Regulatory Guideline MG13 Mineral exploration reporting has been produced to assist exploration licence holders in the preparation and submission of statutory reports (that is annual activity summaries, technical and partial surrender reports) for mineral exploration licences in South Australia.

The guidelines are in line with national standards on the reporting of digital exploration data, and the content of exploration reports. The timely submission of these reports in a standardised format assists the Department for Energy and Mining to deliver effective and efficient regulation, and facilitate the timely and efficient release of surrendered ground and data to industry.

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Compliance reporting

Exploration compliance reports (ECR) will be required for all exploration activities conducted on exploration licences (ELs), mineral claims (MCs) and retention leases (RLs) where an exploration program for environment and rehabilitation (EPEPR) has been approved pursuant to Part 10A of the Mining Act 1971. The reporting periods and minimum information required to be submitted in an ECR is specified within Terms of reference 012: Mineral exploration compliance reports (PDF 483 KB)

Where activities have been conducted in accordance with the Adopted program 001: Generic program for environment protection and rehabilitation - low impact mineral exploration (PDF 491 KB), an ECR is not required. However, the Minister (or delegate) reserves the right to request an ECR for activities conducted in accordance with the generic PEPR for audit purposes, or where there may be reason to believe that the generic PEPR outcomes are not being achieved.

Where an exploration EPEPR has been approved for activities not covered by the generic PEPR, an ECR must be submitted for:

  • each individual EL; or
  • a single report covering all tenements included within joint reporting arrangements agreed to with the Minister (or delegate).

An ECR template has been developed to assist explorers to meet the requirements of TOR 012, and facilitate effective and timely assessment by the department.

ECRs must be submitted using the following template:

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Notification of an airborne survey

Mining Regulation 80 requires the tenement holder to provide notification of any proposed airborne surveys to the department 14 days prior to undertaking this work.

Notification of an airborne survey is also required to be submitted for airborne surveys which will be carried out using an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) or drone.

A notification of an airborne survey on a mineral tenement must be completed and lodged online using the following form:

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Joint (combined) reporting

Where an exploration project is being conducted across adjoining exploration licences and mineral tenements, the tenement holder can apply to the Director for joint reporting status for those tenements. Such arrangements are encouraged as they reduce the number of reports to be completed by companies and reduce handling by the department.

Requests for joint reporting status must be emailed to DEM.Exploration@sa.gov.au (Attention: Exploration Data Team) using the application for combined/joint reporting form. The application must be accompanied by the relevant information as detailed on the form.

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National mineral exploration reporting standards

Mineral exploration reporting should conform to the national standard developed by the Chief Government Geologists' Committee (CGGC). This standard includes Australian requirements for the submission of digital data.

National standards to facilitate the creation of geochemical, drilling and other point located data in the required templates has been developed to assist with compliance with the reporting guidelines.

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Submitting digital reports and data

Submissions can be made by any of the following means:

  • Email digital version to DEM.Exploration@sa.gov.au (20 MB limit)
  • Kiteworks - the secure file transfer software used by the department to enable the transfer of information that is too large to be conveniently sent via email.

    Send email to DEM.Exploration@sa.gov.au to request Kiteworks link

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More information

Exploration Data Team
Mineral Resources Division

+61 8 8429 2587
DEM.Exploration@sa.gov.au

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