EnvironmentPrincipal applicable environmental laws
What are the principal environmental laws applicable to the mining industry? What are the principal regulatory bodies that administer those laws?
The principal environmental laws applicable to the mining industry are:
- Law 32/2009 on Environmental Protection and Management and its implementing regulations;
- GR 82/2001 on Water Quality Management and Water Pollution Control;
- GR 78/2010 on Reclamation and Post-mining;
- GR 27/2012 on Environmental Permits;
- GR 101/2014 on the Management of Hazardous Materials and Toxic Waste;
- MEMR Regulation 26/2018 on the Implementation of Good Mining Principles and Supervision of Mineral and Coal Mining; and
- MEMR Decree 1827K/30/MEM/2018 on the Guidelines for the Implementation of Good Mining Technique Principles.
The principal regulatory bodies that administer these laws are:
- the MOEF;
- the authority that issued the mining licence; and
- the relevant regional government.
What is the environmental review and permitting process for a mining project? How long does it normally take to obtain the necessary permits?
Under the Environmental Law, depending on the activities, required environmental permits generally consist of:
- an environmental impact analysis (AMDAL);
- environmental management effort and environmental monitoring effort (UKL-UPL);
- an environment management and monitoring capability statement (SPPL); and
- an environmental licence.
A UKL-UPL is required for mining activities at the exploration stage and an AMDAL is required for mining activities at the operation production stage. Mining activities also require an environmental licence regardless of the stage.
Before preparing any environmental permit, the mining company must ensure that the intended mining location complies with the applicable spatial layout plan; otherwise, the AMDAL or UKL-UPL document cannot be assessed by the authorities.
A mining company can obtain a recommendation for its UKL-UPL from the relevant authority by submitting a statement letter attesting to its commitment to implement the UKL-UPL along with the completed UKL-UPL form to the chair of the regency or city environmental agency, the chair of the provincial environmental agency or the deputy of the MOEF, as relevant. The relevant authority will assess the UKL-UPL and issue a UKL-UPL recommendation within 14 business days of the date of receipt of the UKL-UPL.
An AMDAL document includes:
- terms of reference;
- an AMDAL; and
- an environmental management plan/environmental monitoring plan (RKL/RPL).
Before preparing the AMDAL, the mining company must announce its project in a local or national newspaper, in accordance with the authority of the AMDAL evaluator. It must also post the information on an announcement board or through another medium that is easily accessible by the affected community (eg, brochures, pamphlets, television, websites, radio or the announcement board at the local environmental office). The mining company must also conduct a public consultation to enable community members to comment on the planned project. The mining company must then prepare the terms of reference, which must follow the guidelines provided by the MOEF, and submit these for evaluation by the AMDAL Evaluation Commission to the minister, governor or regent (as relevant), depending on the location of the planned business or activity. Once the terms of reference have been approved, the mining company must prepare an AMDAL and RKL/RPL documents, along with a request for an environmental licence, for submission to the AMDAL Evaluation Commission at the relevant authority. Evaluation of the documents should be completed within 75 days, and if no revision is necessary, the relevant authority will stipulate an environmental feasibility decision within 10 days based on the recommendation of the AMDAL Evaluation Commission, which serves as approval of the AMDAL documents.
Approval of the AMDAL or UKL-UPL documents serves as the basis for which the relevant authority will issue an environmental permit, which is done simultaneously with the issuance of the environmental feasibility decision or UKL-UPL recommendation.Closure and remediation process
What is the closure and remediation process for a mining project? What performance bonds, guarantees and other financial assurances are required?
Under GR 78/2010 and MEMR Regulation 26/2018, CoW, IUP and IUPK holders are subject to reclamation and post-mining obligations at both the exploration and exploitation stages.
As part of their reclamation and post-mining obligations, IUP exploration and IUPK holders must:
- submit a reclamation plan for the exploration stage to the mining licence issuing authority;
- provide a reclamation and post-mining guarantee, the amount of which will be subject to the approval of the appropriate issuing authority;
- carry out the reclamation plan; and
- submit a reclamation plan for the operation production stage and a post-mining plan when applying for an IUPOP or IUPKOP.
IUPOP or IUPKOP holders must:
- provide a reclamation and post-mining guarantee, the amount of which will be subject to approval of the appropriate issuing authority;
- submit periodic reclamation plans for the operation production stage;
- carry out operation production stage and post-mining reclamation; and
- report the implementation of these activities to the appropriate issuing authority.
As part of their reclamation and post-mining obligations, IUPOPK-PR holders must:
- submit a post-operation plan to the appropriate issuing authority;
- carry out post-operation environmental and ecosystem repair, restoration and management activities; and
- report the implementation of these post-operation activities to the appropriate issuing authority.
What are the restrictions for building tailings or waste dams?
Construction of tailings or waste dams is governed under, among others, Minister of Public Works and Housing (MOPWH) Regulation 27/PRT/M/2015 on Dams. The construction of a tailings or waste dam requires:
- a water resources utilisation licence from the MOPWH, local governor or local regent or mayor (as applicable), unless no water resource is utilised;
- a principle licence from the MOPWH, local governor or local regent or mayor, depending on the construction location, after obtaining a technical recommendation from the MOEF and MEMR; and
- a construction licence from the MOPWH.
MOPWH Regulation 27/2015 imposes a general obligation to use workers with the relevant expertise and skills, and certain roles may require a certificate of expertise.
MOPWH Regulation 27/2015 does not refer to the responsibilities of mining companies with regard to rescuing people in case of a dam failure. The local community has the right to file a complaint or lawsuit against a mining company for any damages due to the construction and management of a dam. In practice, the mining company may be required to provide compensation to the local community in the event of a dam failure.