Geological and Mining Law Act

Last updated: 7 November 2022

The Act defines the terms for undertaking the following activities:

  • Geological work;
  • Minerals extraction from deposits;
  • Non-reservoir storage of substances in the subsurface;
  • Storage of waste in the subsurface; and
  • Storage of carbon dioxide in the subsurface.

It also sets out the requirements for the protection of mineral deposits, groundwater, and other environmental components in relation to the aforementioned activities. The Act distinguishes between State Treasury ownership and land ownership. State ownership includes hydrocarbons, hard coal, methane deposits accompanying hard coal, lignite, native metals, ores of radioactive elements, native sulphur, rock salt, potassium salt, potassium-magnesium salt, gypsum and anhydrite, gemstones, rare earth elements and noble gases, and metal ores. Deposits of minerals not indicated in the Act belong to the land owner. The State Treasury may exercise its mineral rights regardless of where the deposits occur. 
Article 26 declares that in an application for a concession for the extraction of minerals from deposits, the minister in charge of the environment shall specify, by regulation, detailed requirements for deposit development plans to ensure environmental protection and to protect human life and health.
Article 29 declares that the concession-granting authority will refuse to grant a concession if the intended activity is contrary to state interest in raw materials or environmental protection.
Under the Operating Fees Rates Annex, "methane from coal" is determined to have no additional operating fee. 
Article 162 mandates the State Geological Survey to prepare a national balance of mineral resources. These data are stored in the MIDAS (System of management and protection of mineral resources in Poland) database, the central geological archive.

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