The Government is seeking feedback on an exposure draft of the proposed exploratory drilling for oil and gas regulations (the Draft Exclusive Economic Zone and Continental Shelf (Environmental Effects - Non-Notified Activities) Regulations 2013) which are required to implement the June 2013 amendments to the Exclusive Economic Zone and Continental Shelf (Environmental Effects) Act 2012 (the EEZ Act).

These regulations classify exploration drilling for petroleum in the exclusive economic zone or in or on the continental shelf as a non-notified discretionary activity, which under the EEZ Act would require operators to apply for a marine consent but there would be no public announcement of the application, or the nature of the proposed activity.

The Government is particularly interested in receiving feedback on the proposed definition of "exploratory drilling for petroleum" which was highlighted as being key to the classification decision under the EEZ Act in previous consultation rounds.

The Government has provided a supporting document to the draft regulations which explains the exposure draft process, the non-notified discretionary classification and how to make a submission. A copy of this document is available here. Submissions close on 31 January 2014.