Authors: Wilson, IH

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Wilson, IH 2006, 'Legislating for Quicker and Better Rehabilitation', in AB Fourie & M Tibbett (eds), Mine Closure 2006: Proceedings of the First International Seminar on Mine Closure, Australian Centre for Geomechanics, Perth, pp. 761-771,

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Queensland has developed a comprehensive and effective set of legislation for mining. Rehabilitation is a relatively late addition to the legislation and although it first appeared about 60 years ago, few mines had legislative obligations to undertake rehabilitation until the 1980s and it did not become mandatory until 1990. This paper examines the reasons rehabilitation requirements have become significant and why they are still changing. It also shows how this has been reflected in the legislation and comments on available measures of the area of rehabilitation and the lack of information on the quality of rehabilitation. Experiments with self-regulation in the 1990s do not appear to have fostered a desire to undertake rehabilitation. Recent legislative changes have provided opportunities for getting better rehabilitation and completing it as early as possible. The constraining factors are cost and the levels of technical knowledge about rehabilitation in both the mining companies and the regulators. The current effort is directed towards technical and procedural guidelines to provide greater certainty in decision-making.

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