Members of Resources Law Network provided a submission to the Productivity Commission inquiry into Resources Sector Regulation. The submission emphasised the need for increased awareness and use of international standards and materials in Australian resource regulation.

The full Resources Law Network submission (by John Southalan and Joe Fardin) can be downloaded at this link.

In summary, the submission:

  • commended the Commission’s inquiry and Draft Report, and supported many of the observations and recommendations in the Draft Report;
  • urged the Commission to explicitly identify how non-financial aspects feature in its inquiry and analysis, which should include principles of ecologically sustainable development;
  • emphasised the importance of international standards and materials in informing how Australian resource regulation should occur, particularly with regard to revenue funds, home-state obligations, responsible business conduct, and free prior informed consent; and
  • reiterated that public involvement should not be envisaged as community acceptance and involvement within a pre-determined resources project – instead, community engagement must be part of planning and decision-making from the beginning; and that may involve decisions that resource extraction does not occur in some places.