Geothermal titles and activities

Exploration permits

Before you apply for a geothermal exploration permit, you must read and understand all the Northern Territory and Commonwealth laws that might affect your proposal, including:

Applications for a geothermal exploration permit must be made on the correct form with supporting information and payment of the correct fee. Get the forms and fee information.

Read below for instructions on how to fill in your exploration permit application. Each part is explained in detail with a list of the information you will need to give.

The applicant

In this part of the form, all applicants must identify themselves. Use an extra page if there are more than four parties.

Part of form Information needed
Full name of applicant

In the case of individuals, state the full name of each person. In the case of corporations, state the name of each corporation as shown on their latest certificate of incorporation.

Principal or residential address of applicant

State each applicant’s principal or residential address. This is the physical address at which documents will be served on each applicant.

Postal address

State postal address of each applicant
Australian Company Number (ACN) This is the number described on the certificate of incorporation and issued by the Australian Securities and Investment Commission

All applicants must state their proposed interest in the permit in a percentage (not shares)

Particulars of agent

An applicant can nominate a person or corporation to administer their application. This agent will receive correspondence about the application.

Part of form Information needed
Full name of agent State the person or corporation's full name
Postal address This must be the agent's postal address. It will be the care-of address that the department will use for correspondence about the application.
Authorisation to act as agent If the agent is not the applicant, provide a written authorisation to act as agent from each applicant. A corporation should put the authorisation on company letterhead. An individual applicant should sign the authorisation.

Particulars of area

This part of the form is for detailed, technical information. You will need to know how to describe an area for a title application.

Part of form Information needed
Number of blocks You may apply for up to 2000 blocks.
Map of application area You must include a map showing the area you are applying for a permit over, including the boundaries of existing land holdings or geographical features. The map must be on the GDA94 datum, and at a scale that clearly shows which blocks are being applied for.
Written description of area

The written description must be on the GDA94 datum. You must identify the application area by either of the following methods:

  • latitudes and longitudes
  • list of all affected blocks with the Block Identification Method.

Exploration program and expenditure

Provide details of a realistic exploration program for the first five-year term of the exploration permit.

The program should include a summary of the exploration philosophy and models to be tested.

Most of the expenditure should be for field work and costs connected to that work.

A work program should take into account some or all of the following, and include proposed expenditure for each item:

  • data research and interpretation
  • geochemical sampling
  • drilling - auger, vacuum, RAB, RC or diamond
  • geophysical survey
  • consultancies
  • analytical testing
  • labour costs
  • camp maintenance
  • fuel and other expenses
  • administration.

Departmental fees such as rents should not be included.

Financial resources

You will need to prove you have the financial resources to fund the proposed five-year work program. This can be done in the following ways:

  • for companies - lodge financial excerpts from annual or quarterly reports
  • for individuals - a bank letter showing you have enough money for the proposed work - it does not have to show the exact amount of funds held
  • a statement of available funds from a company or private accountant on letterhead.

Other exploration interests and commitments you have will be taken into account for this assessment.

Qualifications, expertise and experience

You will need to prove you have the technical qualifications, or can easily get technical advice, to undertake the proposed program.

You should give the names and credentials of individuals or consultants who will be employed.


The application fee for an exploration permit fee is $5,000.

The fee will not be refunded if the application is withdrawn. Applications will not be accepted without correct payment.

How to pay

You can use the following methods to pay your fee, depending on how you submitted your application:

  • personal cheques or money orders, made payable to the Receiver of Territory Monies - they must be attached to the application
  • Visa or MasterCard - you must give written authorisation either on the form or in an attached letter
  • direct debit - contact the department's Titles Division
  • EFTPOS and cash payment are only available for applications lodged in person.


Applications must be signed by the applicant or their approved agent.

Where to submit

Completed applications can be submitted by any one of the following methods:

Hand deliver to

Attn:  Executive Director, Energy
Department of Primary Industry and Resources
Energy Directorate
4th Floor Centrepoint Building
The Mall
Darwin NT 0800

By post to

Attn: Executive Director, Energy
Department of Primary Industry and Resources
Energy Directorate
GPO Box 4550
Darwin NT 0801

By fax

Fees must be paid by credit card.
There is no need to post the original documents as well.

08 8999 5191

By email

Fees must be paid by credit card.
There is no need to post the original documents as well.


The department will publish a notice of the application in the NT Government Gazette, and in an appropriate newspaper, and invoice the applicant for the costs.

Approval or refusal

If an application is approved, the applicant will get an 'offer of a grant' letter. If an application is not approved, the applicant will get a letter of refusal.

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Last updated: 12 May 2016


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