Mineral and energy resources

The mining and energy industries are critical to the Northern Territory's (NT) development, particularly in regional areas.

Developing mineral and energy resources

There are requirements that must be met if you are exploring or producing mineral and energy resources in the NT. Find out more about:

You can get information about the Territory's known major commodities on the Resourcing the Territory website. This includes:

  • past and current production
  • resource figures
  • details of current projects
  • geological and industry information.

Types of minerals in the NT

The NT has some of Australia's largest deposits of:

  • uranium
  • zinc-lead
  • bauxite
  • gold
  • phosphate
  • manganese.

Find out about the production of these and other minerals on the Resourcing the Territory website.

Fossickers have unearthed an array of gems and minerals in the NT. Read more on the Fossicking website.

Laws and regulations

A list of legislation and regulations covering the exploration, mining and extractive activities in the NT is below.


Mineral Titles Act 2010

Mineral Titles Regulations 2011

Mining Management Act 2001

Mining Management Regulations 2001

McArthur River Project Agreement Ratification Act 1992

Merlin Project Agreement Ratification Act 1998

Minerals (Acquisition) Act 1953

Mining (Gove Peninsula Nabalco Agreement) Act 1968


Petroleum: onshore and inland waters

Petroleum Act 1984

Petroleum Regulations 2020

Petroleum (Environment) Regulations 2016

Schedule of onshore petroleum exploration and production requirements (776.0 kb)

Petroleum: specific to Mereenie and Palm Valley

Petroleum (Prospecting and Mining) Act (236.6 kb)

Petroleum (Prospecting and Mining) Amendment Act (No. 1) 1981 (77.1 kb)

Petroleum (Prospecting and Mining) Amendment Act (No. 2) 1981 (32.9 kb)Petroleum (Prospecting and Mining) Amendment Act (No. 3) 1981 (22.0 kb)

Petroleum (Prospecting and Mining) Regulations 2001

Petroleum: NT coastal waters

Petroleum (Submerged Lands) Act 1981

Petroleum (Submerged Lands) Regulations 1987

Pipelines: onshore and inland waters

Energy Pipelines Act 1981

Energy Pipelines Regulations 2001

Environmental Offences and Penalties Act 1996

Environmental Offences and Penalties Regulations 2011

National Gas (Northern Territory) Act 2008

Pipelines: NT coastal waters

Petroleum (Submerged Lands) Act 1981

Petroleum (Submerged Lands) Regulations 1987

Geothermal legislation

Geothermal Energy Act 2009

Geothermal Energy Regulations 2009

Other legislation relevant to mining, petroleum and geothermal activities

Aboriginal Land Rights (NT) Act, 1976

Atomic Energy Act 1953

Dangerous Goods Act 1998

Dangerous Goods Regulations 1985

Environmental Assessment Act 1982

Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999

Heritage Act 2011

Heritage Regulations 2012

Marine Pollution Act 1999

Marine Pollution Regulations 2003

Mineral Royalty Act 1982

Native Title Act 1994

Northern Territory Aboriginal Sacred Sites Act 1978

Radioactive Ores and Concentrates (Packaging and Transport) Act 1980

Radioactive Ores and Concentrates (Packaging and Transport) Regulations 1980

Seas and Submerged Lands Act 1973

Soil Conservation and Land Utilisation Act 1969

Transport of Dangerous Goods by Road and Rail (National Uniform Legislation) Act 2010

Transport of Dangerous Goods by Road and Rail (National Uniform Legislation) Regulations 2011

Uranium Royalty (Northern Territory) Act 2009

Waste Management and Pollution Control Act 1998

Waste Management and Pollution Control (Administration) Regulations 1998

Water Act 1992

Water Regulations 1992

Weeds Management Act 2001

Weeds Management Regulations 2006

Work Health and Safety (National Uniform Legislation) Act 2011

Work Health and Safety (National Uniform Legislation) Regulations 2011

Last updated: 29 March 2021

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