Woomera Prohibited Area New Access Arrangements

Saturday, Sep 06, 2014 at 11:41

Life Member - Mike (SA)

On 9 August 2014, amendments to the Defence Act established a co-existence framework to provide greater certainty of access and assurance to all non-Defence users around Defence activity in the Woomera Prohibited Area (WPA).

The Act also introduces, through the /Woomera Prohibited Area Rule 2014/, a permit system for non-Defence user access; access management zones with defined exclusion periods; and new compliance and enforcement measures. The Rule was registered on the Federal Register of Legislative Instruments on 26 August 2014 and came into effect on 27 August 2014.

IMPLICATIONS FOR WPA USERS

Aboriginal persons and traditional owners
Aboriginal persons and traditional owners can continue to access the WPA under the /Defence Force Regulations 1952.
http://www.comlaw.gov.au/Details/F2004C00213

Pastoralists
Pastoralists can continue to access their pastoral lease under the Defence Force Regulations 1952.
http://www.comlaw.gov.au/Details/F2004C00213.

Tourists
Tourists will need to apply for a *Tourist Permit* to transit through or travel to all areas within the WPA other than the:Stuart Highway;•William Creek Road;•the Lake Cadibarrawirracanna Road; Olympic Dam - Pimba Road: and•the Woomera Village.
Permits previously issued by the Woomera Test Range for travel up until end October 2014 remain valid.

Opal or Precious Stone Prospector
Opal or Precious Stone prospectors will continue to access the WPA under their current permits until such time as they expire. Should you wish to renew your permit, you will be required to obtain a new Opal Mining and Precious Stone Prospecting Access Permit, which contains revised conditions of entry.

*Research/Environmental/Other*
Researchers or those seeking access to the WPA on environmental or other grounds will need to apply for a *Research/Environmental/Other Purpose Access Permit *to transit through, or travel to, all areas within the WPA other than: the Stuart Highway; William Creek Road; the Lake Cadibarrawirracanna Road; Olympic Dam - Pimba Road; and the Woomera Village.

*Resource Exploration*
Resource exploration companies who access the WPA under a Deed of Access will continue under these arrangements for up to six months from commencement of the permit scheme. By 9 February 2015 resource exploration companies will be required to have a *Resource Exploration Permit* in place should they wish to continue their permission to access the WPA.

*Resource Production (Mines) *
Operating mines with an existing Deed of Access will continue to access the WPA under their existing arrangements provided for under the /Defence Force Regulations 1952/. New resource production companies seeking access to the WPA will be required to obtain a *Resource Production Permit*.

*Mineral Extraction ( Quarries) *
Mineral extraction companies who access the WPA under a Deed of Access will continue under these arrangements for up to six months from commencement of the permit scheme. By 9 February 2015 Extractive Mineral Licence (EML) holders will be required to have an *Other Purpose* *Permit in place *should they wish to continue their permission to access the WPA.

Additional information on all new access arrangements, including permit applications and accompanying forms can be found at:
http://www.defence.gov.au/woomera.
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