Exploration Permits

An Exploration Permit is an instrument which allows an early exploration proponent to carry out prescribed early exploration activities at specific times and in specific locations.

It is advisable to review the Exploration Permit Application instructions prior to starting the Exploration Permit Application process.

Exploration Permits include terms and conditions that may be used to mitigate potential impacts identified through the consultation process.

Some prescribed early exploration activities will require an Exploration Permit.  Those activities will only be allowed to take place once the permit has been approved by ENDM.

Surface rights owners must be notified when applying for a permit.  Aboriginal communities potentially affected by the exploration permit activities will be consulted and have an opportunity to provide comments and feedback before a decision is made on the permit.  Permit proposals will be posted for comment on the Ontario Ministry of the Environment Environmental Registry for 30 days.

Who Should Submit an Exploration Permit Application

Early Exploration Proponents who wish to undertake prescribed exploration activities on claims, leases or licences of occupation should submit an Exploration Permit application.

What are the early exploration activities that require an exploration permit application

  • Line cutting that is a width greater than 1.5 metres;
  • Mechanized stripping of a total surface area of greater than 100 square metres within a 200-metre radius (and below advanced exploration thresholds);
  • Excavation of bedrock that removes more than three cubic metres of material within a 200-metre radius;
  • Use of a drill that weighs more than 150 kilograms

More information on these activities can be found in the Activity Information document.  As part of our efforts to improve outreach to Indigenous communities the Activity Information documents are available in Cree, Oji-Cree and Ojibway.  If you would like a copy of these translated documents please contact ENDM.

When Should Applications for Explorations Permits be Submitted

Exploration Permit applications should be submitted at least 55 days prior to the expected commencement of activities. Submission of an exploration permit is voluntary beginning November 1, 2012.  Exploration permits are mandatory as of April 1, 2013.

How Do I Submit the Exploration Permit Application

Exploration Permit Applications can be submitted directly to ENDM.

How Do I Find Out More About Exploration Permits That Have Been Issued

Exploration Permits that have been issued are included on the Exploration Plans & Permits Table.