The Ontario government has proposed amendments to O. Reg. 240/00 (Mine Development and Closure under Part VII of the [Mining] Act), which would outline administrative procedures for those persons undertaking voluntary rehabilitation of abandoned mines. The Mining Act was recently amended to protect such persons from certain regulatory orders under the Environmental Protection Act and Ontario Water Resources Act relating to historical conditions at the abandoned mine for which these persons are not responsible. According to the government, industry was concerned that orders could be issued against these persons by virtue of their management or control of the property they were rehabilitating or had rehabilitated. To obtain the proposed protection, they would have to meet specific requirements when submitting voluntary rehabilitation applications. The amendments would also specify the lands, apart from Crown land (as defined by the Mining Act), to which the voluntary rehabilitation protections of the Act would apply.
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