UQ Summer Research Project: Regulation of land access for resource development

Project title
Regulation of land access for resource development: Queensland’s Land Access Code Development 2010-2020
Project description
To meet predicted future energy demand, Australia will need a range of new energy projects, including those for the extraction of natural gas. Such projects usually occur over a large area of land and often, this land is held in some form of private ownership, either freehold title or a primary production lease.

In 2010, with the development of the coal seam gas industry in Queensland, the Queensland Government introduced specific regulations to more clearly define the rights of both gas companies and landholders and to describe a process for negotiating a land access agreement where required and contents for a required conduct and compensation agreement. These were released as the Land Access Code. A purpose of the Land Access was “to balance the interests of the agricultural and resource sectors to address issues of land access”.

Over the last ten years, the Land Access Code has undergone multiple reviews and changes in an ongoing effort to balance the interest of two industries on one shared landscape.

The aim of this project is to construct a timeline of events that can describe the evolution of the Land Access Code over time, using relevant literature: reports, commentaries, industry and government documents as well as media articles.

Expected outcomes and deliverables

  • A summary timeline of events that have influenced the evolution of the Land Access Code.
  • A brief technical report describing the key factors and the extent of their influence.

Project suitability

This project would suit a student who is interested in land use policy and government and regulatory responses to land use conflict. It would also suit a student interested in how external, ‘social licence’ pressures work to influence and change government regulations. The student will have good English language skills and be able to identify key themes from a range of literature.