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NSW Exploration Code of Practice: Community Consultation

NSW DRE LogoThe Division of  Resources and Energy (DRE), part of the Department of Industry, Resources and Energy in New South Wales, is currently reviewing its Guidelines for Community Consultation Requirements for Exploration and the associated community consultation reporting information.

One of the conditions on titles is that title holders must undertake community consultation according to the guidelines set out by the DRE.

A draft of the new Exploration Code of Practice: Community Consultation is now available for public comment.

The draft Code:

  • requires community consultation to be adequate, inclusive and appropriate, and be undertaken in an open and accountable way
    provides detailed requirements relating to the development of a community consultation strategy
  • requires the type and scale of consultation to correspond with the activity impact level (an assessment tool is provided to determine the impact level)
  • incorporates detailed guidelines on the minimum requirements for the Annual Community Consultation Report (these are also supported by Community Consultation Plan provisions which outline the content of a plan, and its benefit in informing the annual reporting requirements).

The draft Code will apply to all titles (coal, minerals and petroleum) issued after the publication of the Code, through an amended condition of title.  The community consultation conditions on minerals titles will be amended to be consistent with those for coal and petroleum.

The public are invited to submit their feedback on the draft Exploration Code of Practice: Community Consultation.  Information on how to lodge submissions is available from the DRE web site.  Submissions received before the 30 November, 2015 will be considered in the finalisation of the draft Code.


A recent judgement in a case relating to a dispute between parties involved in a Western Australian iron ore project contained several important lessons for Competent Persons preparing statements of Exploration Results, Mineral Resource and Ore Reserve estimates.  The judgement was handed down on 14th August, 2015 following hearings in the Federal Court of Australia during June 2015.

Technical reports tendered as evidence in the case were ruled to be inadmissible by the Judge hearing the case.  Some of the shortcomings identified by the Judge have been addressed by the 2012 edition of the JORC Code(JORC 2012), largely through mandating the transparent and material assessment of all items included in Table 1 of the JORC Code and mandating the use of an “if not – why not” approach, which itself is an important means of ensuring transparency.   The reporting of Exploration Potential has also been further clarified in JORC 2012.

Important lessons arising from the judgement for geoscientists acting as Competent Persons include:

  1. Any report presented to any company, publicly listed or private, has potential to be legally discoverable with the potential to be made public.  The JORC Code, first and foremost, is a standard of best practice that AIG recommends members follow, rigorously, at all times.
  2. Maintenance of document control and versioning for announcements and reports of Exploration Results, Mineral Resources and Ore Reserves is critical:
    • Where more than one person contributes to preparation of an announcement or report, all authors should be named, even through the responsibility for the document will rest with the nominated Competent Person(s);
    • Reports issued in draft form should be clearly marked as drafts;
    • All versions of a report should bear the date on which it was completed;
    • Any updates to a report should bear a new version and date so that the chronology and process of preparing a report can be clearly and unambiguously established.
  3. Statements of Exploration Potential are forward-looking predictions of what a resource may become with exploration and evaluation, or a target that must be achieved for the explorer or developer of a project to consider it a viable future prospect.  This differs markedly from Resource or Reserve estimates which are based on actual data.  The guidelines for stating Exploration Potential in JORC 2012 need to be clearly followed.  This includes clearly distinguishing Exploration Potential from Resources and Reserves, that extensive work is required to realise Exploration Potential and that statements of Exploration Potential are subject to considerable uncertainty.
  4. The work of others used in preparing report of Exploration Results, Mineral Resources and Ore Reserves must be reported in context.  The assessed reliability of the data and the extent to which it was reviewed and relied upon in preparing any report must be transparently described.


It is worth noting that the situation regarding JORC compliance is currently somewhat different between Australia and New Zealand.  New Zealand Petroleum and Minerals has taken the very significant step of requiring JORC 2012 compliance for all reports of Exploration Results, Mineral Resources and Ore Reserves by both companies and state owned corporations.  This includes the requirement for reports to be prepared by a Competent Person.  This effectively extends JORC compliance to all entities who hold prospecting, exploration and mining permits in New Zealand, not just publicly listed companies.  AIG considers this an effective means of extending the benefits of JORC Code compliant reporting to New Zealand’s entire exploration and mining industry.

The AIG Complaints Committee reviewed the conduct of the Competent Person named in the documents relating to exploration results, resources and reserves and elected not to refer the matter to the Institute’s Ethics and Standards Committee.  The Complaints Committee found no evidence of professional misconduct warranting further action.

Andrew Waltho
Chairperson, Complaints Committee
21 November 2015

AIG’s on–line services to members: the Membership Portal; and the event registration system and on-line shop;  accessed via the Institute web site ( require separate usernames and passwords for several reasons.

The Membership Portal is provided to AIG by a third party provider who specialise in on-line association management systems.  The membership database is managed using highly secure servers and encrypted communication links established by our provider to ensure that members’ personal information is managed in the most secure manner possible and protected from unauthorised access.

The Membership Portal pages have been designed to have a similar “look and feel” to the AIG web site, but that’s where the similarities end.

AIG is committed to maintaining the privacy of members but needed a membership data management solution where members are able to securely access and maintain their own contact information.

The event registration and booking system, and AIG’s on-line shop are part of the main AIG web site and are based on the same underlying technology, allowing them to share a common subscriber database.  Both the events registration system and the on-line shop are able to be used by members and non-members, whereas the Membership Portal is a strictly members-only system.  A username and password is required to use the event registration system and shop because both:

  • Employ user-provided data to make second and subsequent visits to either site easier;
  • Personal information collected is used to identify event attendees and for the delivery of purchasers;
  • Both systems keep a record of event attendance and purchases to enable registered users to obtain summaries for end of year tax return preparation and tracking CPD activities.

Linking the two systems may well be technically possible but, it was feared, would create an unacceptable risk of inadvertently exposing members’ information.


  • Credit card details provided during event registration or purchasing publications is managed using secure e-commerce systems provided to AIG by the Institute’s bank.
  • All personal data collected by AIG is held securely and in strict compliance with relevant Australian laws.
  • AIG’s auditors also require that records of all transactions conducted by the Institute are collected and retained for a period of time specified by relevant laws and regulations.  Again, this information is held securely and the username and password helps to ensure that only you have access to your personal data.

If you use a password manager, such as Apple’s Keychain or the password manager included in Google Chrome, these browsers will recognise the Membership Portal and the event registration system/bookshop as being separate to one another and allow different usernames and passwords to be held for them and made available to your authorised devices.  This means that you don’t need to remember your username and password when you need to login to either if you opt to make use of these capabilities  It is important, however, that anyone using Internet-based services ensure that their computer is appropriately secured against unauthorized, malicious intrusion.

Both the Membership Portal and events registration/bookshop will also send a link to your registered email address if you forget your password at any time, allowing them to be reset quickly and conveniently.  Look for the password reset link on the login page.

The AIG web site is tested using Microsoft’s Internet Explorer, Google Chrome and Apple’s Firefox web browsers.  We are aware of an issue affecting use of the event registration and on-line shop affecting Firefox browser users. Regrettably, we’re unable to support Firefox and suggest that users opt for one of the supported browsers to make use of the secure services  of the AIG web site.

When you make use of both the Membership Portal and the events registration/bookshop systems you are helping to reduce the workload of AIG’s service providers and volunteers, which in turn minimises the Institute’s costs and ensures we can maintain low membership, event registration and publication fees and costs while securely delivering services to members and non-members supporting AIG by attending events or purchasing publications.

Member AdvantageChristmas is on the horizon and planning is in the air. Why not take advantage of your AIG membership discounts to find the perfect gifts for your family and friends or enjoy relaxing summer holidays away?

AIG members have access to great savings including:

Gift cards and e-Gift cards: Need a quick and easy gift idea for someone special? Select from our wide range of gift cards including: Westfield, Coles, Wish (Woolworths and Caltex), Kmart, The Good Guys, Harris Scarfe, Rebel Sport and more.

Receive exclusive discounts on e-gift cards for Myer, Flight Centre, David Jones and other retailers.

Movie Tickets: Treat someone to a night at the movies at a film of their own choice. Gift vouchers available for all major Australian cinemas including tickets for Gold Class, Lux, the candy bar and IMAX. E-Vouchers tickets are available for Hoyts and Palace cinemas.

Lifestyle experiences and Gifts: Take a walk on the wild side and give an experience like no other. Choose one of many hair raising experiences like car racing, balloon rides, jet boating and more with RedBalloon and Adrenalin.

Online shopping: Avoid the crazy crowds and shop for your loved ones via our online shopping hubs. Enjoy a range of discounted toys and manchesterelectronics, magazine subscriptions, flower deliveries, IT products and services all at the click of a button!

Accommodation:  Indulge yourself for less and book a room with Best Western across Australia, New Zealand and Fiji or with HotelClub Partner Network at thousands of hotels worldwide.

Dining: Christmas lunch is on us this year with access to generous discounts at selected restaurants across Australia, including two for one meals.

For more information, visit the AIG Member Advantage website or call 1300 853 352.

Member Advantage Christmas

40 CPD HoursCorbett Menzies Cunliffe Pty Ltd are again holding their “an introduction to porphyry Cu-Au exploration” field training course in the Orange area, NSW from 28 Feb to 5 Mar 2016.

This course will provide field-based training to allow the participant to begin exploration for porphyry Cu-Au deposits. It will be run in the Orange area NSW, mapping field exposures and drill core from the Cargo and Copper Hill exploration projects, and drill core from the Cadia-Rideway and North Parkes porphyry Cu-Au deposits. Mapping will emphasise the identification of porphyry veins styles, alteration styles, mineralisation, structure and lithologic variations. Introductory lectures will include: the staged evolution of porphyry systems which includes the role of alteration, structure and breccias, and moves on to the exploration environment including the erosion level above an ore zone and also mapping techniques.

Cost: $3500 (+GST) pp and 10 places for unemployed geologists at $1750 (+GST) pp. Fees include accommodation, bus travel, meals and (take home) field equipment. Funding assistance is available for NSW young geoscientists who are AIG members – check out the website.

Places are limited to 25.

Instructors: Dr Greg Corbett, Doug Menzies and Stuart Hayward.

Duration: 28 February to 5 March 2016 with 5 days of field work (field days might be substituted for lectures in really bad weather). The agenda is as follows:

Sunday 28/2/16 – arrive by midday with an afternoon of lectures (compulsory).
Monday 29/2/16 – Cargo porphyry Cu prospect – 1:500 scale mapping.
Tuesday 01/3/16 – Cargo & Copper Hill projects – mapping & log drill core.
Wednesday 02/03/16 – Cargo & Copper Hill projects–mapping & log drill core.
Thursday 03/03/16– Cadia Ridgeway Porphyry Cu-Au deposit- log drill core.
Friday 04/3/16 – Goonumbla Cu-Au deposit – Log a cross section of drill core.
Saturday 5/3/16 – Depart.

Evening Lectures might include (1-2 hours):

  • Porphyry Cu-Au genetic models.
  • GIS footprints for porphyry Cu-Au exploration.
  • Porphyry deposit case studies.

For further information email:

Please note that CMC reserves the right to cancel this event should minimum attendance numbers not be met.

Registrations will close on 31 January 2016.