NSW Govt mulls coal license database integration

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NSW Govt mulls coal license database integration

Statewide review recommends closer IT ties.

A NSW Government review of coal exploration licenses has recommended closer ties between internal IT systems to make future compliance checks easier.

The state Department of Trade and Investment's Resources & Energy division last month published its final audit [pdf] into the compliance of selected coal and coal seam explorers with the conditions of their respective exploration licenses.

Specialist units within the government agency were responsible for certain aspects of each license, including titles, petroleum geoscience, environment sustainability and mine safety operations.

Although each unit filed data about exploration licenses "appropriately", it was noted that each also administers its own database for the subset of license data it is interested in.

The state government said better linkages between the databases "would allow units to review and take into consideration all aspects of an exploration license, rather than the isolated components that individual units have responsibility for".

It recommended that the agency prepare a business case for linking the licence information systems within the resources division.

A NSW Resources & Energy spokeswoman said it was "examining options for implementation of this recommendation", without elaborating on a proposed timeline for the decision.

The review also recommended a more consistent approach be applied to electronic filing and naming conventions across divisional units involved in exploration licensing.

"Improved document management, in addition to better liaison across Resources & Energy units, will ensure that the monitoring and regulation of licenses is more effective," the review said.

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