New Qld FIFO laws in place

THE Strong and Sustainable Resource Communities Act came into force in Queensland on Friday, meaning major resource projects adjacent to nearby regional communities will no longer be able to employ 100% fly-in fly-out workforces in the state.
New Qld FIFO laws in place New Qld FIFO laws in place New Qld FIFO laws in place New Qld FIFO laws in place New Qld FIFO laws in place

Under the law, large resource projects - those with 100 or more workers and an environmental authority - located within a 125km radius of a nearby regional community with at least 200 residents will be affected

Queensland Minister for State Development Cameron Dick said Queensland's independent coordinator-general initially listed 61 large resource projects - including 43 coal, 15 mineral and three LNG projects - and listed 230 nearby regional communities associated with these projects.

"The Strong and Sustainable Resource Communities Act delivers on the Queensland government's commitment to prohibit 100% FIFO workforces," he said.

"It also gives workers choices through two statutory tools approved on March 26 by the coordinator-general - a list of large resource projects captured by the new act and a new enhanced social impact assessment guideline.

"This means any project on the list currently operating with a 100% FIFO workforce now has to transition its workforce to include recruitment of workers from nearby regional communities within six months."

From March 30 the large resource projects listed are also prohibited from discriminating against residents of nearby regional communities in the future recruitment of workers.

"Central Queensland towns like Moranbah - which is a nearby regional community close to 25 large resource projects - will realise significant benefits, with locals having a fairer opportunity of securing employment under the new Act," Dick said.

"Going forward, the new social impact assessment guideline for projects will also support local and regional resource communities."

Project owners will have to demonstrate to the coordinator-general that their workforce and supply chain arrangements provide opportunities to build strong and sustainable resource communities.

The social impact assessment guideline requires owners of future projects to engage with local communities and stakeholders and ensure those communities benefit from the project through employment and business opportunities. 

Project owners are also required to safeguard the health and wellbeing of communities.