You will require this licence if you intend to conduct mineral exploration activities in NSW's offshore area.
This licence will authorise you to explore for minerals and take samples of minerals within a specified licence area. A mineral is a naturally occurring substance such as sand, gravel, clay, limestone, rock, evaporate, shale, oil-shale or coal. This licence does not apply to the exploration of petroleum resources. Your licence may restrict the kind of minerals covered.
Licence areas are based on a graticular boundary (or block) system. The minimum size of an exploration licence is one block, and the maximum size is seventy blocks, except in areas not designated as mineralised areas, where the maximum size is 200 blocks.
An exploration licence may be granted over a standard block or over a tender block. A standard block is a block which is vacant, where no permit or licence is currently in force. A tender block is a block subject to a tender block licence notice published by the Agency. The application process varies according to whether you are applying for a standard or tender block. To obtain a licence in respect of a tender block you must successfully pass a competitive tender process.
NSW's offshore area extends to three nautical miles from the coastal baseline. If you intend to undertake exploration activities outside this area, you will need to apply for a licence under the Australian Government legislation.