Public register—Environmental Protection Act 1994
The department maintains a public register of records related to the regulation of environmentally relevant activities. This is provided in accordance with the Environmental Protection Act 1994 and you have the right to view and request this information.
To view records on the public register, we recommend that you:
- Search the Public Register Portal for immediate access to online records related to environmental authorities, enforcement actions, and rehabilitation plans.
- If you cannot find a record on the portal, submit a public register information request. The department is typically able to respond to these requests within 10–75 business days, depending on the size and complexity of your request.
The public register is just one way to access information held by the department. Information that is not releasable under the public register may still be available through other options for accessing departmental information.
Search guide for public register information
The following table summarises the records that can be searched and/or requested through the public register.
|Annual returns||Some environmental authority (EA) holders must report on their operations annually (including progressive rehabilitation and closure plans, and coal seam gas evaluations).||Information request|
|Environmental authority (EA) applications for public notification||Current applications or major amendments for large scale petroleum, coal, or mining activities that are undergoing public notification.||DES website|
An environmental authority (EA) allows the holder(s) to conduct environmentally relevant activities. An EA may also be known as a permit or licence.
Most current permits are available online through the Portal.
Previous versions of permit documents may also be accessible through the Portal. The department will incrementally add these versions over time.
Where a record is not already available online, it may be obtained via an Information Request.
|Portal or Information request|
|Eligibility criteria and standard conditions||Criteria for EA holders to conduct environmentally relevant activities (ERAs) and the standard conditions which apply to those activities.||DES website|
Enforcement actions issued as a result of non-compliance. Not all enforcement types are releasable under the provisions of the public register; those available through the register include:
|Supporting documentation||Documents required under a condition of an environmental authority (EA), transitional environmental program (TEP) or a temporary emissions licence (TEL).||Information request|
|Environmental impact statements (EIS)|
Large mining and petroleum projects must prepare an environmental impact statement (EIS) before an environmental authority can be issued.
Current EIS documents are available on the DES website. Historical EIS documents may be requested via an Information Request.
|DES website or Information request|
|Environmental management and contaminated land registers||Land that is affected by hazardous substances. Searching these registers will incur a fee.||DES website|
|Estimated rehabilitation cost decision||An estimated rehabilitation cost (ERC) is the cost required to rehabilitate or manage disturbance of land on which a regulated resource activity is carried out.||Information request|
|Information notices about financial assurance||Financial assurance is a type of security to cover the expense incurred in taking action on a regulated prescribed activity.||Information request|
|Plans of operation (PoO)||Holder(s) are legally obligated to carry out land rehabilitation for certain environmentally relevant activities. The department aims to transition holders to Progressive Rehabilitation and Closure (PRC) plans over time.||Information request|
|Progressive rehabilitation and closure plans (PRCP)||Portal|
|Suitable operator (cancelled or suspended)||A record that an individual or organisation was previously eligible to hold or apply for an environmental authority (EA), but no longer current.||Information request|
|Suitable operator (current)||A record that an individual or organisation is eligible to hold or apply for an environmental authority (EA).||DES website|
|Temporary emissions licence (TEL)||A licence that enables the holder to release a contaminant into the environment, typically in response to an unforeseen event. This includes TELs created from 2012 onwards.||Portal|
For general enquiries about the public register (including requests for records that cannot be obtained through the online portal, or information request form) contact the department:
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Phone: 1300 130 372 (select option 4).