Applications about natural resources

VCAT can hear and determine disputes about the management and use of water and earth resources such as rock and sand. For example, disputes about:

  • licences to take and use water from a river or stream, soak or spring, or water from under the ground under section 64 of the Water Act 1989
  • taking of water, place of take approvals and the rate of take under section 64FZM of the Water Act 1989
  • water shares under section 33AX of the Water Act 1989
  • determinations about exceeding authorised amounts made under section 64EC of the Water Act 1989
  • licences for works to construct a bore, dam or waterway under section 83 of the Water Act 1989
  • licences for underground disposal by use of a bore under section 83 of the Water Act 1989
  • a work plan or work authority for an extractive industry section 77TI of the Mineral Resources (Sustainable Development) Act 1990.

For all other matters

VCAT also deals with a range of other matters about: 

  • the management of water, waterways and water related infrastructure and services under the Water Act 1989
  • notices, compensations or administrative matters under the Mineral Resources (Sustainable Development) Act 1990
  • requirements and decisions about compensation made under the Petroleum Act 1998. 

For information about applications under these acts, learn how to make another type of environment and resources application.

How to respond to an application you have received notice about

If you believe your interests will be affected by an application made by another person, you can participate in the case if you received notice about it.

To participate, you must submit a statement of grounds within the time limit stated on the notice of the application.

Submit Statement of Grounds online


We can explain the application process and what the form is asking you for. Contact us to get support.

We cannot give you legal advice. This means we cannot tell you what to write in your application or recommend how to get the outcome you want.

Seek legal help if you are unsure about your options or need advice about your claim.

Make an application

You may have to pay a fee with your application. Read more about fees at VCAT and how to apply for fee relief.

If you have any difficulties with applying online, contact us on 1300 01 8228 and select 5.

Do I need a lawyer or professional representative?

You may have legal or other professional representation to appear at VCAT (such as a lawyer, relative, or some other person). In Environment and Resources cases you do not need to have VCAT's permission to be represented.

Find legal services that may be able to assist you.

Access and privacy

VCAT hearings and files are usually public.

VCAT has limited authority to restrict who can access cases and files but, in certain circumstances, you can apply for confidentiality.

Legislation that applies to this type of case

Other organisations that may help

VCAT can't offer you legal advice. Below are organisations that may be able to help with your case.

Department of Energy, Environment and Climate Action (DEECA)

Information on land planning, property and land titles and land administration.

Earth Resources

Department of Jobs, Precincts and Regions' Earth Resources website shares legislation about Victoria's earth resources, including extractive industries, mining, oil and gas.

DEECA: Water and Catchments

DEECA manages groundwater, catchments and waterways, infrastructure, water saving and re-use projects, flood management, governance and water legislation.