The hydraulic fracturing (fracking) pause on petroleum titles in Western Australia has been lifted, however, the controversial practice remains banned across 98 per cent of the state.
The amendment lifts the freeze on existing titles and prohibits the practice within two kilometres of public drinking water source areas, in national park, towns and the Dampier Peninsula.
Fracking will not be permitted over a large amount of Western Australia, including Broome and Kalbarri and all exploration and production projects will be regulated under new requirements.
The McGowan Government’s policy will also maintain the ban on fracking in the South West, Peel and Perth metropolitan area.
Additionally, traditional owners and farmers will have the right to say no to oil and gas production from fracking on their land.
Mines and Petroleum Minister Bill Johnston said companies undertaking future hydraulic fracturing activities would need to refer all exploration and production projects to the Environmental Protection Authority for assessment.
“A new code of practice will also be developed, prescribing minimum enforceable standards for hydraulic fracturing activities,” Johnston said.
“Proponents considering hydraulic fracturing are encouraged to engage with the Environmental Protection Authority and the Department of Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety to ensure they understand the new requirements.”
The announcement follows an independent scientific inquiry carried out to understand the risks associated with extracting petroleum products using fracking.