Access to private land

A licence is required to generate, transmit, supply, or sell electricity in Victoria. 

On 20 December 2023, ESC granted Marinus Link an electricity transmission licence to transmit electricity between Tasmania and Victoria and connect the project infrastructure into the existing transmission network in Victoria. 

The transmission licence will also enable Marinus Link to access land and seek compulsory acquisition of easements that are required over land for the project under the Electricity Industry Act 2000 (the Act). Compulsory acquisition will only be sought in the event that the project is not able to negotiate an Option for Easement with a landholder.  Marinus Link is committed to seeking voluntary agreements with all landholders. 

What is the ESC?

  • The ESC is an independent regulator promoting the long-term interests of Victorian consumers regarding the price, quality, and reliability of essential services, including energy.
  • The ESC holds the power to grant electricity transmission licences in Victoria.

Essential Services Commission Land Access Code of Practice

The Essential Services Commission Land Access Code of Practice (the Code) sets obligations and regulates the engagement approach and information that licensed electricity transmission companies must provide to affected parties (and other parties interested in land) prior to: 

  • entering into access agreements; 
  • accessing private land; or 
  • using statutory powers under the Act.

The Code sets out the following objectives:

(a) Balance the statutory right of electricity transmission companies to access private land to provide essential services, and the rights of those interested in the land who are affected by that exercise of power; 

(b) Regulate how electricity transmission companies access private land using powers derived from section 93 of the Act, where attempts to enter into an access agreement have been unsuccessful; 

(c) Establish conditions for electricity transmission companies when exercising powers under section 93 of the Act, including consultation and notice requirements; 

(d) Regulate information electricity transmission companies must provide to persons interested in the land prior to entering access agreements as an alternative to the use of access powers under section 93 of the Act; 

(e) Regulate ongoing reporting obligations of electricity transmission companies when accessing private land; and 

(f) Promote the long-term interests of Victorian electricity consumers. 

The Code came into effect on 1 March 2024. See the ESC’s website for more information and to locate the Land Access Code of Practice: Developing a Land Access Code of Practice | Essential Services Commission

Marinus Link’s obligations under the Code

On this page, we use the term ‘affected party’ to mean a landholder or occupier.

What does section 93 of the Act say?

Marinus Link’s preference is to enter into voluntary access agreements with landholders. However, under section 93 of the Act, Marinus Link has the power to enter onto land, along with its authorised persons, to undertake surveys and conduct works related to the development of Marinus Link. The full text of section 93 can be found in on page 227 of the Act.  

When accessing land under section 93, Marinus Link must do as little damage as possible, and must make full compensation for any damage sustained by affected parties while exercising its powers under section 93.

Importantly, Marinus Link must comply with the Land Access Code of Practice, as required under section 93 (5) (d) of the Electricity Industry Act 2000.

Consulting with affected parties and other parties interested in land

We identify affected parties and other parties interested in land by undertaking title searches to notify us of the registered proprietor of the land and of other parties with interests noted on the title. We also search the Australian Securities and Investments Commission register for company details, including contact details. To make sure we have up to date information, we periodically re-do these searches. On occasions, we may also visit the property to make contact with landholders or occupiers.

Why we engage

In meeting the obligations of the Code, we engage with affected parties and other parties interested in land about our proposed access, to discuss how you can provide your insights into Marinus Link, and to understand your specific needs and concerns. This includes seeking to understand the biosecurity, fire, health or cultural heritage requirements relating to an affected party’s property. 

We are committed to providing relevant and up to date information, and considering the feedback provided by affected parties and our stakeholders. 

Subject to privacy, confidentiality or commercial sensitivity matters, upon written request from an affected party we will provide the outcomes of the surveys or investigations carried out on the affected party’s land.

What are Marinus Link’s obligations when accessing land?

Under the Code, Marinus Link has obligations before, during, and after accessing land. Some of our obligations are different depending on whether we are accessing land under an access agreement, or under section 93 of the Act. 

Before accessing land

Before accessing land, we will provide affected parties with information including:

  • The affected party’s rights under section 93 and the Code;
  • Our rights and obligations under section 93 and the Code;
  • Mitigation and compensation protections under section 93;
  • Differences between our access to land under an access agreement and under section 93;
  • The effect of entering into an access agreement, including payments that we make under an access agreement;
  • The affected party’s right to refer complaints to the Energy and Water Ombudsman Victoria (EWOV);
  • Specifics of the land access purpose, including:
    • How the land access interacts with our environmental, planning, and other approvals processes and what stage of the project the access relates to;
    • Proposed dates and durations for access;
    • What activities we will be doing on the land;
    • How we will manage equipment, chemicals, biosecurity requirements and other land management obligations including the disclosure of any chemicals used;
    • The proposed terms of our access agreement;
    • How affected parties can comment on any of the information we provide, or request changes to access dates or details; and
    • Rights of affected parties to refer complaints about access under section 93, or our compliance with the Code, to EWOV.

Access under an access agreement

Seeking a voluntary agreement to access land is extremely important to Marinus Link and we will do all we can to achieve this outcome. 

At the time of entering into an access agreement, we will consult with affected parties about: 

  • The requirements for accessing your land, including notice periods; 
  • Access routes; 
  • The types of activities we will undertake when we are on the land; 
  • Biosecurity requirements; and 
  • Other requirements the affected parties might have. 

We will work with affected parties to address your requirements in the access agreement. 

Should we need to change our plans, in accordance with our agreement, we will notify all parties at least 48 hours prior to the planned date and outline the purpose of these changes. 

We will access the land in accordance with the access agreements with each affected party. 

Affected parties may contact us if the proposed time does not work, and our team will endeavour to work with landholders to ensure that all requests are taken into consideration.

Access under section 93

Where attempts to enter into an access agreement have been unsuccessful, under section 93 of the Act, we may access land following the sending of a notice of access. The Code contains specific obligations for us to comply with when we are accessing land under section 93 of the Act. While we are accessing land using our powers under section 93, Marinus Link must do as little damage as possible to the land and minimise the impact of the land access on affected parties. Some of the surveys that we undertake may cause ground disturbance, which we will reinstate and remediate along with any other damage caused during the access. 

The notice of access will be provided to affected parties at least 10 business days prior to the intended start of the access period, and 20 business days following the delivery of information about our access rights and obligations to the affected parties. A notice of access will only be valid for the access period. 

The notice of access will advise of the access period, planned dates and times of access, details of access, and the affected parties’ rights to refer complaints to EWOV. We will also contact the affected parties at least 48 hours before the proposed access as a reminder. 

We will make sure that individuals accessing private land on behalf of Marinus Link will have appropriate skills and training, will comply with our obligations under this Code and the Act, and will show respect for the affected parties’ privacy, private assets, and existing infrastructure on the land. Our aim is to minimize harm, inconvenience, and damage, and we will remove all materials brought onto the property once the works have been completed unless we agree otherwise, or which are required for the purpose of the access. 

During the land access period, we will provide all affected parties with our biosecurity, fire risk, and health risk policies and procedures upon request, and we will document any incidents, including how they were managed. 

Under the Land Access Code of Practice, an access period must not exceed six months. This can be reviewed by following the process set out in The Code.

After the land access, we will give a report to the affected parties within 15 business days. The report will have specific details including how many people went onto the land on each access date, what they were doing, any materials or chemicals they used, and all activities related to managing fire risks, health risks and biosecurity controls.  If an environmental, biosecurity, fire or health incident occurs, we will provide information about that incident upon reasonable request by an affected party, to assist with a response to that incident.

If we cause damage to the land during our access and the damage cannot be reinstated or remediated, we will provide compensation to the landholder or other parties interested in the land as required under the Act. We will seek to agree the amount of compensation with you and if we cannot reach agreement, the compensation will be determined in the manner provided in the Land Acquisition and Compensation Act 1986 (Vic). 

What if Marinus Link or affected parties need to change the notified access?

If we need to change the dates or times of access due to reasons beyond our control, we will contact all affected parties at least 48 hours before the originally planned date, advising of the reason/s for the change. Should this proposed time not work for the affected parties, our team will work with the affected parties and endeavour to find a time which suits all. We will advise affected parties of the amended dates and times for access. 

Affected parties may also request to change the access date. At all times, Marinus Link will consider those requests in good faith.

Emergency situations

In an emergency situation, we may access the land without notice to ensure the area is safe. If this occurs, affected parties will be notified as soon as possible following the event.

Complaint Handling Policy

Marinus Link takes complaints against the project seriously and has a process to address land access complaints in a timely manner.  For more information, visit our landholder engagement page.

Should you remain dissatisfied with the response provided by Marinus Link to your complaint, you may escalate this to the Energy and Water Ombudsman of Victoria. You can contact them via their website (Energy and Water Ombudsman Victoria (EWOV) | EWOV) or by calling 1800 500 509.

Record Keeping

We store land access details for seven years, as required by the Code. This includes all verbal conversations with affected parties regarding private land access. 

If we are speaking with affected parties, we will confirm our communications in writing after each conversation unless affected parties choose to opt out of this. 

Marinus Link will also share an affected party’s communication records with that affected party upon request. 


Electricity transmission companies are required to submit monthly performance reports to the Commission. These reports must include information on land access activities conducted during the month, excluding those for operating or maintaining existing assets. The reports must be provided in writing and in a specified format. They should be submitted by the tenth business day of the following month.

Additionally, Marinus Link will report to the ESC on any breaches throughout the reporting period.

If these reports contain confidential or personal information, we must:

a) Clearly indicate the confidential and/or personal information in the document.

b) Explain why the information is considered confidential.

c) Provide a version of the report accessible to the public, with the confidential and/or personal information either removed, redacted, aggregated, or de-identified in a way that safeguards confidentiality and privacy when published by the commission.

More information

You can contact the Marinus Link project team using the details below:


Call:   1300 765 275

Mail:   Marinus Link Pty Ltd PO Box 606 Moonah Tasmania 7009

Attachment 1 – Section 93 of the Electricity Industry Act 2000


If you require an interpreter, contact TIS National on 131 450 and ask to be connected to Marinus Link.