Mining Act legislation

The Mining Act 1978 (the Mining Act) outlines the law as it relates to mining, and for incidental and other purposes.

Until recently the Mining Act 1978 has applied to the land area of the Western Australia and, by arrangement with the Commonwealth, the first three nautical miles of the territorial sea from the baseline.

The baseline is a nominated line that generally constitutes the mean low water mark, but also goes across bays and around offshore islands and is depicted on the Department of Mines and Petroleum’s (DMP) TENGRAPH mapping system.

Under the Offshore Constitutional Settlement, agreed many years ago between the States, Northern Territory and Commonwealth, it was determined that there would be an Australia-wide common minerals legislative regime applicable to all of the territorial sea.

The Offshore Minerals Act 2003 which commenced on January 1, 2011 fulfills Western Australia’s commitment to that agreement. From that date granted mining tenements and applications that encroach into this area are now governed by the Offshore Minerals Act 2003 and not the Mining Act.

Current versions of the Mining Act 1978, the Mining Regulations 1981 and the Offshore Minerals Act 2003 are located on the State Law Publisher website.