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offshore mining

The New South Wales Government remains committed to a balanced approach to the state’s mineral resources despite ruling out commercial applications for offshore exploration and mining.

Deputy Premier and Minister responsible for Resources Paul Toole has announced the NSW Government will not support commercial applications for offshore mineral, coal, or petroleum exploration or mining, in or adjacent to, NSW coastal waters.

Toole said the NSW Government sees certainty and sustainability in its current onshore developments, with no need to venture offshore.

“We’ve provided certainty to the NSW onshore coal sector, which remains a key employer and on track to deliver record royalties, and we’ve unveiled a strategy to grow the local critical minerals and advanced manufacturing sectors,” he said.

“We also have a very clear vision for onshore gas exploration and production, providing certainty for regional communities and industry alike.

“This is another way we are shaping a stronger and more sustainable sector and providing greater confidence for investors and clarity to both industry and regional NSW communities.”

Toole said any offshore exploration or mining will be limited to tackling coastal erosion through beach renourishment, where a clear public benefit exists.

“NSW has some of the world’s most spectacular coastlines which support local industries and make them a great place to live and visit, and we want that to continue for future generations,” he said.

“This policy recognises that our coastal ecosystems are complex and sensitive and formalises our long-held view that the NSW Government will not support offshore exploration or mining for commercial purposes.

“While our coastline will be off-limits for commercial operators, exploration and the potential mining of sand will remain an option to address coastal erosion and restore sand to beaches, such as the work already being carried out at Newcastle’s Stockton Beach.”