The Australian government has outlined is plans to introduced more stringent laws for coal and coal seam gas mining in the country citing water contamination concerns.
Environment minister Tony Burke has stated that the mining companies will now have to seek approvals and assessment of their impact on water from the national government.
"The proposed amendments will ensure that coal seam gas and large coal mining developments must be assessed and approved under national environment law, if they are likely to have a significant impact on a water resource," said Burke in the statement.
The new amendments were the result of increasing pressure exercised by the general public over its damages to the fragile water resources in the country, reported Reuters.
With this new law, the companies are now liable to provide additional information regarding the environmental impact data to a new independent expert scientific committee.
"Up until now, we have only been able to take account of water to the extent there has been an impact on issues such as threatened species or a RAMSAR (protected) wetland.
"My department is writing to every company affected advising them as to what the additional information is, so that they can get to work on that," elaborated Burke.
The minister, however, added that the existing projects currently underway would not need to apply for any further approvals.