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ERR Application Map

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Notice of Application

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VFF & MCA Landowners Guide

Introduction

North Central Gold Pty Ltd (NCG), as the managing and operating company of exploration licence (EL) application EL007582, is focussed on generating targets using a combination of innovative, non-invasive geophysical techniques, prior to systematically drill-testing prospects.

The application for EL007582 (or “Warrack”) is located to the northwest of Warracknabeal. Gold is the primary target, with secondary targets of copper, lead, zinc (base metals).

NCG’s approach will be underpinned by developing strong relationships with regulators, Traditional Owners, landholders, communities, and other relevant stakeholders. NCG proposes to undertake low-impact activities within the first 2-4 years of tenure to build good relationships to garner trust and a social licence to operate.

An exploration licence does not permit the company to mine for minerals, nor does it guarantee that a mining licence will be granted over the licence area. To conduct its exploration activities, NCG will be required to comply with more than twenty pieces of legislation (State and Commonwealth) which are designed to protect the environment, cultural heritage, Native Title rights and communities.

Less than one percent (1%) of exploration projects progress to a mining operation; however, if NCG is successful, the company will continue to update, adapt, and implement its stakeholder and community engagement plan through each stage.

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Nature Of On Ground Exploration

A proposed program of exploration activities is described below. Exploration may be accelerated or moderated dependent upon success, seasonal constraints, and funding. Exploration results will dictate future activities – should results not warrant further investigation, then future activities may be scaled back or cease. Conversely, encouraging results may ‘fast track’ further exploration on a specific target area.

The first year will comprise desktop reviews of past exploration and any mining activities in the general area, to develop an understanding of the geology and structural features in the project area. This information will be used to develop geological models and plan the exploration program. Reconnaissance trips to site to undertake geological mapping and become familiar with the geology, ground conditions and local stakeholders.

Geophysical surveys in the first 2-3 years of the proposed program will greatly reduce impacts to communities and landowners. In combination with existing datasets, NCG will be able to pinpoint and clearly define drill targets with a view to reducing the area of disturbance required for potential drilling and ground-disturbing activities in years 4-5.

Should higher impact exploration activities be planned such as exploration drilling, it will involve a submission of a low impact exploration plan or work plan to Earth Resources Regulation, detailed rehabilitation plans, and monitoring and auditing.

Environment Strategy

Prior to the commencement of any ground intrusive work on an exploration licence, an explorer is required to lodge a rehabilitation bond, considered sufficient to cover the disturbance from the proposed exploration activities. Additional approvals may be required under the Environment Protection Act 1970 and the Water Act 1989.

NCG is committed to minimising or where possible avoiding environmental impact and will work in accordance with the guidelines as determined by the Victorian Government and will facilitate effective rehabilitation of all disturbed areas. No wetlands, waterways or lakes will be impacted by exploration activities.

NCG will comply with the ‘Code of practice for mineral exploration’ and will conduct its activities based on the Code’s principle that well-planned and managed exploration projects should have little or no lasting impact on the environment with minimal disruption to land users and the community.

https://earthresources.vic.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0016/456100/Code-of-practice-for-mineral-exploration.pdf

Should NCG undertake ground intrusive works, it may require the preparation and approval of a work plan prior to the commencement of work. In preparing a work plan NCG will be required to consider, and manage risks in relation to the following:


  • Dust, noise, and light emissions control
  • Drainage and discharge control
  • Erosion control
  • Noxious weed and pest control
  • Removal or restoration of native vegetation
  • Impact to flora and fauna
  • Progressive and final rehabilitation
  • Groundwater protection
  • Surface water protection
  • Community impact
  • Safety to the public and public infrastructure
  • Cultural heritage
  • Seasonal concerns (fire, floods, high wind seasons)

In certain Crown Land areas (i.e. Restricted Crown Land) it is required to obtain further consent from the relevant Minister.

All rehabilitation will be carried out as soon as is practicable after exploration activities have taken place and in line with the current guidelines for environmental management in exploration and mining. NCG will ensure all staff and contractors are aware of all site-specific environmental sensitivities, such as weeds and endangered flora and fauna and will act accordingly.

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Other Statutory Requirements

Subject to other statutory requirements being satisfied, an exploration licence, if granted, entitles the holder of the licence to explore and search for minerals in the relevant land, but does not entitle the holder to undertake mining.

Further information regarding the statutory requirements that must be complied with prior to work being undertaken on a licence, including landowner and occupier consent requirements, is available at:

https://earthresources.vic.gov.au/community-and-land-use

Community Engagement Plan Aims And Objectives

NCG believes that effective community engagement depends on mutual trust, respect and effective communication between the company and the community. Community engagement is an iterative process that evolves and changes as projects develop; it also needs to be flexible and transparent in order to respond to community needs. Therefore, the engagement approach taken by NCG will vary according to the nature of activities, the level of impact and degree of community interest.

A technical assessment of the licence areas in the first 2-3 years will be via non-invasive exploration methods (e.g. desktop studies and geophysical), and it is NCG’s intention during this time to build good relationships with local communities. Good early engagement and community support not only builds company value, but increasingly supports regulatory requirements for community engagement. In order to achieve this, NCG will:


  • Strive to understand the values of the local community
  • Demonstrate commitment to preserving the values that are important to residents
  • Undertake genuine engagement
  • Adopt the principles of the landowners’ guide developed by the Minerals Council of Australia and the Victorian Farmers Federation
  • Procure goods and services from local businesses wherever possible
  • Review and re-examine principles, behaviours, culture and engagement processes to ensure that a good relationship between the company and the community is achieved.

The proposed exploration area covers both Crown and private land, which will affect a number of stakeholders with different interests and responsibilities. NCG will work with local councils, landowners and occupiers, Traditional Owners, the Crown land managers (Department of Environment, Land Water and Planning), catchment management authorities, and other groups who may have an interest in the land under investigation.

NCG will comply with the ‘Code of practice for mineral exploration’ and will conduct its activities based on the Code’s principle that well-planned and managed exploration projects should have little or no lasting impact on the environment with minimal disruption to land users and the community.

https://earthresources.vic.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0016/456100/Code-of-practice-for-mineral-exploration.pdf

STAKEHOLDER ANALYSIS AND COMMUNICATION

Stakeholder mapping and a process to identify directly affected communities will be established prior to the grant of the licences.

The chief executive of the local councils, Traditional Owners, landowners and occupiers will be notified of proposed activities and estimated duration in writing, at least fourteen (14) days prior to commencement (both low-impact, reconnaissance activities and works requiring an approved work plan). Follow-up communication will be via a telephone call and/or a face-to-face meeting. Further information will be provided as appropriate during the term of the licence.

Records of community engagement activities will be maintained as a source of evidence to demonstrate compliance with the licence conditions. These records will include the type of engagement implemented, distribution method (e.g. phone, registered post or internet), proposed exploration activities, a list of stakeholders involved and stakeholder feedback.

NCG will keep a record of concerns and complaints, which will contain details of the nature of the complaint, date, details of the complainant, as well as actions taken to resolve each issue. Consideration will be given to the most appropriate medium (e.g. phone, email, letter) for communicating with the person/s making a complaint. NCG will ensure that actions to achieve the desired outcome are properly implemented, monitored and reported as necessary. Where a person or group making a complaint is dissatisfied with the outcome of their complaint, an external review may be sought.

EVALUATION AND REVIEW

NCG’s community engagement plan will be reviewed to ensure the aims are met.

Call us on:

(03) 5331 2222

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