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The Western Australian (WA) Government is modernising WA’s safety legislation covering mining, petroleum and Major Hazard Facilities (MHF).

The Department of Mines and Petroleum (DMP) is working to consolidate the safety aspects of mining, petroleum and MHF legislation into one Act – the WHS (Resources) Act.

DMP sought stakeholder input on the content of the proposed WHS (Resources) Bill and commissioned Marsden Jacob Associates to coordinate the consultation.

This consultation formed the middle step in a three stage process to amalgamate and modernise the safety aspects of mining, petroleum and major hazard facilities (MHF) legislation in Western Australia. The consultation focused on the content of the proposed WHS (Resources) Bill.  The Bill broadly aligns with the Model WHS Act, which has been implemented across Australia except for Victoria – with some amendments in some States e.g. Queensland and South Australia).

All stakeholders had an opportunity to participate in this review by making a submission in response to the Consultation RIS and indicative version of the WHS (Resources) Bill (published in July 2015 with submissions invited by 14 August 2015) and through attendance at a stakeholder forum (held in Perth on 23 July 2015).

Marsden Jacob completed their review of consultation responses and submitted the Decision Regulatory Impact Statement (RIS) in October 2015.

The Decision RIS has since been reviewed by both the Regulatory Gate Keeping Unit and the WA Minister for Mines and Petroleum.


Decision RIS

DMP released the Decision RIS on the proposed Work Health and Safety (Resources) Bill in February 2016.

A copy of the Decision RIS is available here.

DMP have indicated that there will be a RIS and consultation on the regulations that would support the proposed WHS (Resources) Act in early 2016.


Consultation RIS

Details of the proposed WHS (Resources) Bill are outlined in the Consultation RIS.  The Consultation RIS, and an indicative version of the WHS (Resources) Bill are provided below:

How were submissions made?

All stakeholders were invited to make a submission on the consultation documents by Friday, 14 August 2015.

Respondents were invited to on:

  • answer “guide questions” outlined in the Consultation RIS; and
  • provide general comments on the proposed Bill and the content of the Consultation RIS.

A Word version of the cover sheet and consultation “guide questions” was provided to facilitate preparation of submissions.

Submissions were received via email or hard copy.


Submissions

The following non-confidential submissions were received in response to the Consultation RIS:

  1. ACOR Consultants (pdf)
  2. ATCO Gas Australia (pdf)
  3. Association of Mining and Exploration Companies (AMEC) (pdf)
  4. Australian Finance Conference (AFC) and Australian Equipment Lessors Association (AELA) (pdf)
  5. Australian Mines and Metals Association (pdf)
  6. Australian Petroleum Production & Exploration Association (APPEA) (pdf)
  7. Australian Pipelines and Gas Association (APGA) (pdf)
  8. BHP Billiton (pdf)
  9. BP Refinery Kwinana (pdf)
  10. Cement Concrete & Aggregates Australia (CCAA) (pdf)
  11. Chamber of Commerce and Industry WA (CCI) (pdf)
  12. Chamber of Minerals and Energy (CME) (pdf)
  13. Glen Neeves (pdf)
  14. Jock Cunningham, Angus Robinson and Chris Towsey (pdf)
  15. Occupational Health Society of Australia WA (pdf)
  16. Plastics and Chemicals Industries Association (PACIA) (pdf)
  17. Risk Engineering Society WA (pdf)
  18. Safety Institute of Australia WA (pdf)
  19. SVT Engineering Consultants (pdf)
  20. Unions WA (pdf)

In addition to the above responses Marsden Jacob received a number of confidential responses. These responses came from a range of stakeholders including companies, individuals and consultants operating in the resource sector.

Marsden Jacob will consider all responses received from stakeholders in the preparation of the Decision Regulatory Impact Statement.


Stakeholder forum

A stakeholder forum was held in Perth CBD on Thursday, 23 July 2015.

The forum:

  • provided an overview of the reform process and the consultation;
  • elaborated on key changes; and
  • answered questions from stakeholders.

Representatives from the Department were available to answer any questions and 52 stakeholders from a range of industries attended.

The forum focused on the 21 key changes identified in the Consultation RIS. It included a general briefing session and a workshop, where attendees had the opportunity to discuss issues pertaining to their specific industry sector.

Copies of the presentations made on the day and the workshop papers are available below:


Background

ResourceBillStepsIn 2014, DMP consulted on the first step of the process, considering five options for reforming the structure of mining, petroleum and MHF legislation. Following the public consultation process Marsden Jacob produced a Decision RIS which recommended implementing the unification of safety legislation covering mining, petroleum and MHFs into a single Act with one regulator, DMP (Option 1).

The Decision RIS was endorsed by both the Regulatory Gate Keeping Unit and the Hon. Bill Marmion, WA Minister for Mines and Petroleum.

It is important to note consultation on the WHS (Resources) Bill focuses on the content of the consolidated Bill and so aims to implement Option 1 from the previous consultation.

For information on the previous consultation please refer to: Structural Reform of Mining, Petroleum and Major Hazard Facilities Safety Legislation.


Further information

For further information on this consultation, please contact Alex Marsden on (08) 9324 1785 or via email at amarsden@marsdenjacob.com.au.

* Following identification of an issue with weblinks in the document, revised copy of the document was uploaded on 16 July.