Australian news, and some related international items

Western Australia’s gas hub discussed by Aboriginal group

Rural Report for Northern WA:   May 2nd 2011, ABC Rural By Matt Brann, Kununurra, Kimberley traditional owners prepare for final vote on gas hub

Traditional owners in the West Kimberley region of Western Australia will this week vote on whether to sign an Indigenous Land Use Agreement, which would represent their final consent to a multi-billion dollar gas hub just north of Broome.

The Kimberley Land Council (KLC) spent last week in negotiations with Woodside and the State Government, and it will now spend this week briefing traditional owners, before the final vote which is expected later in the week.

The KLC had warned that the deal could fall through unless Woodside gave an assurance that it could handle a major environmental disaster…….

The process for traditional owners to vote for or against the Land Use Agreement, has been further cleared after anti-gas hub campaigner Joseph Roe lost another appeal against the handling of the Kimberley gas hub negotiations.

For years, Mr Roe had been one of two legal representatives of the native title claimants of James Price Point, meaning he had to give his approval for a deal to be signed with Woodside and the State Government.

But earlier this year, the claim group removed him from the position, saying he no longer represented the views of the group.

Mr Roe appealed to the Federal Court, saying he was the original and rightful representative of Aboriginal people in the area.

The Federal Court on Friday dismissed his appeal.

….. The State Government has threatened to acquire the land compulsorily if the traditional land owners fail to reach an agreement on the issue.

The claim group is due to hold a final vote on whether to approve the project in Broome later this week.


May 2, 2011 - Posted by | Western Australia

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