Thursday, December 30, 2010

Redhands reflections, Broome and James Price Point 2010

A pictorial view of Redhands’ travels along the coast and around Broome town this year. The word is finally spreading wider and the campaign grows. Outside of government and the judiciary much has been achieved this year

Redhanded took Hands off country to Agadir in Morocco for the International Whaling Commission Meeting 2010 with publicity material support from Kimberley Whales, Environs Kimberley and the Wilderness Society. A face to face with the then Minister for the Environment Peter Garrett placed the preservation of the Kimberley on the International agenda and the protection from industrialisation of the Dampier Peninsula coast at Walmadan, James Price Point, Price’s Point as an urgent priority for the Australian Federal Government.

The Broome Community NO GAS mob has gone from strength to strength, the Christmas message says it all. Save the Kimberley publishes ‘Kimberley at the Crossroads’ and launches in Sydney, see video below. Numerous Facebook pages have been established, while the media have opened their eyes and ears, finally. As to the community, to paraphrase Sandy Dann of Goolarri Radio, it’s time to get the splinters out of the bum and get off the fence.

“We must not do it.”

“They’re dreamin.”

“It’s not going to happen.”

Hands off country

Standing up for the planet

Ol' Man from the Bush from the album Saltwater Cowboy. The Pigram Brothers.
Hands off country. Jude

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Kimberley land take flawed, objectors say

Kimberley land take flawed, objectors say
Lloyd Jones
December 22, 2010 - 2:54PM

Mr Bergmann said the KLC had lodged its objections to compulsory acquisition but hoped an agreement could be struck before it went further.

"If a deal was not done the issue would clog up in court and stall" he said.

Redhand told you so two days ago under the heading: Repulsive Acquisition Deals behind closed doors.

You Carnt Have Your Cake And Eat It Too

Aboriginal leader takes aim at Greens plan of action | The Australian
Urging the Greens leader to respect indigenous rights, Kimberley Land Council boss Wayne Bergmann has called on Senator Brown to stop playing politics with the James Price Point gas hub, saying it was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for Aborigines to get money, jobs and social infrastructure from Woodside.

Red Hand would just like to remind everyone what Mr Bergmann said on the 8th September, 2010 on the ABC Kimberley Radio State's interest in James Price Point bigger than expected when he was interviewed by Vanessa Mills and Ben Collins.

Mr Bergmann says “the project as it stands will not employ any Aboriginal people from the Dampier Peninsula due to a lack of education and training”

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Cooking with gas: How the Kimberley gas hub would blow Australia’s pollution budget | wangle

Cooking with gas: How the Kimberley gas hub would blow Australia’s pollution budget | wangle

11147796-further-concerns-over-industry-on-the-kimberley-coast.pdf (application/pdf Object)

11147796-further-concerns-over-industry-on-the-kimberley-coast.pdf (application/pdf Object)

Heritage bid deals blow to gas plant - The West Australian

Heritage bid deals blow to gas plant - The West Australian

Woodside's plans to build a gas processing plant at James Price Point near Broome have been dealt a major blow with the Australian Heritage Council recommending the site be included in a national heritage listing for the west Kimberley.

Documents obtained by The West Australian under Freedom of Information reveal the council has reversed its decision to leave James Price Point out of its initial assessment of Kimberley heritage values.

Its final boundaries for the proposed 20 million hectare heritage area were given to former environment minister Peter Garrett almost six months ago but have not yet been made public.

In them, the council says dinosaur footprints along the west coast of the Dampier Peninsula have heritage value.

The recommendation is another headache for Environment Minister Tony Burke, who has already put off a decision on national heritage listing for the Kimberley until June, when he will consider environmental approvals for the $30 billion project.

Repulsive Acquisition Deals Behind Closed Doors?

The much awaited Browse Strategic Assessment was released last Monday, but only one hundred copies were made available for the Broome Community, less than 1% of our community will have access to a hard copy of it. This given situation should not surprise anyone given the stance and indifference shown to our community by the Department of State Development throughout the Strategic Assessment process. Redhand will wait and see if the promised three days Community forum will be undertaken by the DSD in early February 2011. This forum has been suggested by members of the Broome community, in order to assist the community and individuals to understand how to address the report and seek clarifications on a range of concerning environmental, social and heritage issues. As far as the report itself goes there is only one word that really sums it up INSIDIOUS. Redhand will address why insidious in the coming days.

GetUp was in Broome last week and met up with a variety of conservation & Indigenous groups and individuals to discuss their current Anti Compulsory Acquisition campaign. An issue that also drew a lot of attention at the Broome Shire Council’s meeting last week with several people raising their concerns in public question time. The community is very concerned that the Shire has shown a total lack of leadership and guidance in regards to this totally barbaric notion of Compulsory Acquisition being enforced within the Shire boundaries.

The Broome Shire will not be making any objections however, the Kimberley Land Council has submitted an objection to the Department of Regional Development and Planning on Compulsory Acquisition on behalf of Joseph Roe and Mr Cyril Shaw because they are the Registered Native Title Claimants for the Goolarabooloo and Jabirr Jabirr Peoples claimant application, being Federal Court proceeding WAD 6002/98. The word on the street and around the tables of senior state bureaucrats is that the Compulsory Acquisitions, Notices of Intention to Take (NOITT) has major holes in it and its basically invalid as well as highly immoral fraudulent.

However, this has not stopped KLC’s TONC members flying up and down to Perth to meet with WA government representatives over the last couple of weeks to negotiate another compensation package for the taking of this land. What’s strange about this is an objection has been lodged by KLC, on behalf of Mr Roe, but they are still making deals behind the backs of the objectors. Now that's what I would call a kick in the guts! A deal has been struck and has already been signed off by TONC, the State Government and Woodside and apparently, an announcement will only be made when its politically advantageous of the above mentioned players. Perfect timing for everyone involved because there will be no media scrutiny about the how’s, where’s or the why’s over the Christmas break.

KLC also released their Indigenous Social Impact Assessments in relation to the proposed world’s largest gas refineries being landed at James Price Point however; they failed to consult with Native Title registered Claimants about any of these reports during the preparation of them. Having read these reports it has become crystal clear to Redhand that most of the information within KLC’s Indigenous Impact reports does not correspond or match up with the: Bradshaw, E and Fry R, 1989 A Management Report for the Lurujarri Heritage Trail, Broome Western Australia. Department of Aboriginal Sites, Western Australia Museum, Perth, May 1989; The Aboriginal Cultural Materials Committee findings, The Report by O’Connor and Veth and the Terrex Report undertaken in 1991, “Report of the Ethnographic Survey of Exploration Licence Application written and compiled by a Mr Nicholas Green, who at the time was under the instruction and control of the Kimberley Land Council.

Redhand was around during the time of Terrex fiasco and remembers the feelings felt and the inner joy experienced on seeing all the Senior Law Men sitting in the grounds of the Broome Court House fighting for Country. And I remember their exultation and their jubilation when the Application was rejected on the grounds “that the entire coastal strip has a high density of Aboriginal Archaeological Sites, many of which it assesses to be of great cultural significance”. The Terrex’s sand mining proposal (June 1990) would have cut the Song Cycle Path in half. The Court accepted that the Songline was simply that, a cultural spiritual Songline consisting of interwoven and interconnected sites, a continuum linking the Northern and Southern Law and that it could not be broken.

So what has changed? Sand- mining or gas refineries what’s the difference? Both have the power to desecrate the song, break the line and then we will all lose our emotional wellbeing links that attach us to Country and all her boundless bounties.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Dinosaur footprints may be obliterated - ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)

Dinosaur footprints may be obliterated - ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)

Conservationists are concerned dinosaur footprints on the Dampier Peninsula will be affected by the gas hub (file)

Reports commissioned by the West Australian Government have concluded dinosaur footprints near the site chosen for the Kimberley gas hub are not worth preserving.

The fossilised dinosaur footprints along the coast north of Broome are recognised as some of the oldest and best preserved in the world.

GetUp! Campaign Actions

GetUp! Campaign Actions

Missy Higgins & Friends - A benefit to help protect the Kimberley - Soulshine: Australian Independent Music

Missy Higgins & Friends - A benefit to help protect the Kimberley - Soulshine: Australian Independent Music

Greens will not derail mines: ALP | The Australian

Greens will not derail mines: ALP | The Australian

Greens leader Bob Brown, whose party supports Julia Gillard's minority government, described a proposed liquefied natural gas processing plant in Western Australia as a "blight" on the Kimberley.

And Greens MP Adam Bandt, whose lower house vote is vital for the survival of the Labor government, also pressured Labor by rejecting as unreasonable its claim that it cannot deliver equal pay for women because it would prevent it wiping out its budget deficit.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Overseas workers to fix skills shortage - ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)

Overseas workers to fix skills shortage - ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)

Government condemned for release of ‘half-baked’ Kimberley gas hub report

Monday 13 December 2010

Release timed to coincide with Chrismtas/New year holiday period

The Wilderness Society has condemned today’s release by the WA government of an incomplete and deeply flawed draft ‘Strategic Assessment Report’ (SAR) for the Premier’s proposed massive LNG plant at James Price Point near Broome. The draft SAR was jointly commissioned by the WA and Commonwealth Governments in 2008 through a formal ‘bilateral’ agreement between the two governments.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Opinion: Anne Poelina on energy developments » Kimberley Page

Opinion: Anne Poelina on energy developments » Kimberley Page - dodgydeals - Woodside Petroleum’s gas refinery, Kimberley coast - dodgydeals - Woodside Petroleum’s gas refinery, Kimberley coast



The project remains on track to enter FEED in early 2011 and to be in a position to take a Final

Investment Decision by mid 2012, as required by the retention lease conditions. These conditions were accepted by each of the Browse Joint Venture participants in December 2009.

The Basis of Design (BOD) phase of the Browse LNG Development has been completed on schedule and to budget, and that work is now progressing through the assurance review process. Woodside is continuing to deliver against the Browse retention lease conditions and schedule ssued by the State and Commonwealth governments.

In February 2010 the Browse Joint Venture participants unanimously selected the development concept, which includes locating the Browse LNG Plant onshore at the Western Australian Government's LNG Precinct, 60km north of Broome. The Browse Joint Venture will invest approximately A$400 million in the development in 2010.

The first of the pre-FEED contracts, for the Central Processing Facility, has been awarded. The

remaining three packages – Subsea and Pipelines, Dry Tree Units and Downstream – are on track to be placed before year end.

As part of the FEED phase, Woodside will commence a significant mobilisation of personnel to

Contractor offices. There are currently more than 300 Woodside staff working on Browse. These include 16 Kimberley Indigenous people already on staff or in training.

The Western Australian Government is progressing the land tenure process at its James Price PointLNG Precinct. Negotiations continue between Woodside, the State and traditional owners.

The joint Federal-State Government Strategic Assessment of the State’s LNG Precinct is being

managed by the Western Australian Government. A public Strategic Assessment Report is due to be released by the end of 2010 for public comment, with the approvals process for the Precinct expected to be concluded by mid 2011. Woodside's Upstream Environmental Impact statement and Field Development Plans are also on track to be submitted for approval next year.

The contingent resources contained in the three Browse fields are 13.3 Tcf sales gas and 360 million barrels of condensate. Appraisal has been completed for the Brecknock and Calliance fields. Further appraisal work will be undertaken on Torosa to improve the conservative recovery factor.

Marketing of Woodside’s share of LNG targeted to come from the Browse project is progressing. The Key Terms Agreement (KTA) with CPC Corporation Taiwan for the potential sale of 2 to 3 million tones per annum of LNG for a period of 15 to 20 years has been extended to allow continuation of Heads of Agreement discussions into 2011. Positive discussions continue with other potential buyers in the Asia- Pacific region for the remaining available volumes.

US embassy cables: Shell seeks to share Nigeria intelligence | World news |

US embassy cables: Shell seeks to share Nigeria intelligence | World news |
Shell's Vice President for Africa, Ann Pickard is now based in Perth, Western Australia

Summary: Shell's Vice President for Africa, Ann Pickard (strictly protect), said a September 13 attack on a Shell natural gas node in Rivers State may impact the supply of gas to Nigerian Liquefied Natural Gas (NLNG) plant, but she downplayed the impact of recent attacks on Shell's current oil production.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Shell's grip on Nigerian state revealed

WikiLeaks cables: Shell's grip on Nigerian state revealed | Business | The Guardian

"There is nothing concealed that will not be revealed, nothing hidden that will not be made known. Everything youhave said in the dark will be heard in the daylight; what you have whispered in locked rooms will be proclaimed from the rooftops.”

– Luke 12:2-3

The oil giant Shell claimed it had ins erted staff into all the main ministries of the Nigerian government, giving it access to politicians' every move in the oil-rich Niger Delta, according to a leaked US diplomatic cable.

The company's top executive in Nigeria told US diplomats that Shell had seconded employees to every relevant department and so knew "everything that was being done in those ministries". She boasted that the Nigerian government had "forgotten" about the extent of Shell's infiltration and was unaware of how much the company knew about its deliberations.

This sounds so familiar, similar to what they have done to Kimberley Land Council (KLC) inserting ex Shell lawyers into the organisation. The oil & gas industries all have their subversives embedded in the Media, Universities, Bank Boardrooms, Government and or their Committees. This is not new, it’s just now we have very effective means to investigate, We now have a birds’ eye view map of all their interconnecting links, the role they play in the manipulation of the general public and their controlling ways.

“There is nothing concealed that will not be revealed, nothing hidden that will not be made known. Everything you have said in the dark will be heard in the daylight; what you have whispered in locked rooms will be proclaimed from the rooftops.”
– Luke 12:2-3

All Redhand has ever wanted to do was to assist people to see the truth … about landing the world’s largest LNG refineries on our small Dampier Peninsular because without information you cannot make informed decisions as a public. Redhand had hoped to provoke community, regional, national and international discussion, debates, and we live in hope of creating reform, raising awareness and inspire people to think globally and ACT locally.

Redhand does not understand why so many Australian are politically apathetic, given the fact that no one is pointing a gun at us. After all, the social justice and human rights violations and the environmental destruction (planned) or concurrent are committed by those in power and the acquiescent public servants, (who service no one but themselves and their mortgage payments) can be suffocating, and the sense of powerlessness that erupts can be paralyzing, especially when …this government’s evildoers almost always get away with their lies, their cover-ups and crimes.

But, the times are changing, so be on guard.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Fly-in, fly-out fuelling violence: study - WA Business News

Fly-in, fly-out fuelling violence: study - WA Business News

The mining sector's reliance on fly-in, fly-out workers is fuelling an epidemic of violence, a groundbreaking new study has shown.

Researchers have found rates of violent assaults in mining communities in Queensland and Western Australia are more than double the average for each state.

Queensland University of Technology Professor Kerry Carrington has identified serious social problems resulting from the fly-in, fly-out workforce model used by mining companies.

Prof Carrington, the head of the School of Justice Studies at QUT's Faculty of Law, said the three-year study showed mine workers were turning to alcohol and drugs in isolated environments where there were few other ways to spend their time.

Redhand believes that the real reasons these companies prefer FIFO, is because of their health.

If a federal government report says that there needs to be a 15 - 20 km exclusion zone around a LNG refinery because of the deadly air emissions and other highly volatile chemicals that are very dangerous to people and the environment. So what is it doing to the workers?

These problems are not just social and environment are also

immoral companies need to keep their workforce working, so they give their FIFO time to return home and neutralize their toxic levels.

This is another reason they do not want to pipe the Browse or the Canning Basin gas to the Pilbara because this would send their emissions off the Richter scale in regards to the the National Pollution Inventory. But considering these companies are in charge of their own monitoring, who really understands what the real state of the air quality in the Pilbara is?

But from my research it appears that all levels of government and their associated departments, all companies with interests in the Pilbara are very aware that they are slowly but surely poisoning the entire population of the Pilbara, both with air shed emissions and the toxic condition of their groundwater and the highly hazardous waste within the environment. One of the reason why they also want to go to James Price Point, it has the highest quality of clear air, on the planet.

Enough to make anyone crazy, violent and take up drinking.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Lurujarri Under Invasion by Hostile Environmental Services

So with the Jabirr Jabirr separate Native Title Application to the Native Title Tribunal not being registered, what will be the effect of this decision on the Federal Court hearing involving Joe Roe, that has been played out over the last week in Broome, is anyone’s guess.

Joe Roe is challenging the Kimberley Land Council’s and the new native title claimants from removing him, as the named applicant on the Goolarabooloo/Jabirr Jabirr Title Claim. This was after waiting 16 years for the original Goolarabooloo registered Native Title Claim to be heard.

What is really confusing is why KLC is continuing in their efforts to remove Joe Roe, even when the new applicant was rejected because Joe’s original Goolarabooloo Claim still stands to be addressed. The Federal Court has adjourned until 14th December in Broome and it is expected to hand down the final decision in late January 2011.

For more information about other current court cases in which Joe Roe is fighting for Country go to the following link:

If there is still no determination as to who the rightful Native Title Claimants are, how can the Heads of Agreement, signed by KLC on behalf of Traditional Owners, Woodside and the State Government in April 2009 have any real legal validity?

Surely this must be raising serious doubts and concerns about the legality and potency of this particular document, but also calls into question, any negotiations being held in relation to the Indigenous Land Use Agreement.

An open account should be given, as to who signed away the Cultural Heritage Agreement with Woodside? When was it signed and when will a copy be available to the public? How does this Cultural Heritage Agreement provide protection? KLC, Woodside and the State Government claim Commercial In Confidence on this heritage agreement, and that is why no one has seen a copy of this Aggreement.

Who gave the heritage clearance to undertake the current surveys and the drilling that’s been happening off shore for months and the removal of soils? When these tests started and KLC were stressing the harm to the Good Faith caused by the tests was because there is a requirement under the native title act for 6 months of good faith negotiations after the expiry of the notification of Compulsory Acquisition. But, where are they now, when the trucks and the drilling rigs are pushing into Country?

Last but not least, the accuracy, scope and conclusions of KLC’s Aboriginal Social Impact Assessment (due to be released 9th December) will need to be proved, because it has been reported that KLC during the process of the Assessment did not inform the people with appropriate information, provided inadequate times to respond and were selective in who they approached.

It was reported in last Monday’s West Australian that the Federal Court Justice John Gilmour quizzed Joe’s lawyer as to whether the hearing was going to be a “thoroughly pointless exercise”.

What the talk is on the ground around Broome is how tragic it was to see KLC using women elders of our community, putting them and their health through the stress of being on the witness stand, while KLC hid the truth under their skirts and from the word on the street left them to hang out to dry.

It’s a dirty messy business that is spiritually denigrating and emotionally strenuous and it is being conducted in the heat and sweat of the build up season, the one before the wet, the season that is famous for bringing with it, frayed tempers, exhausted minds and a kind of tropical madness.

While there has been no determination over who can speak for that Country (Native Title Rights), who can provide the clearances? And while everyone is attending the Court hearings ………. Woodside is pushing and pushing their subcontractors (Hostile Environmental Services! and yes that is their real name!) out into Country, provoking the locals, setting up camp in private traditional camping grounds, hiring the Mamabulanjin Aboriginal Corporation’s Dampier Peninsula’s Cultural Tour Bus to sneak into Country, working in disguise, working without proper paperwork, driving over signs (put up to stop people driving on sensitive sites) opening up all the tracks with 4WDs, cutting into the sand dunes, getting bogged and ripping up Country in order to get out.

If this is the extent of damage created by only 3 hire vehicles currently used by Woodside’s security force, what will Country look like after 5000 - 8000 construction workers descend on country with their 1000's of 4WDs, the off-road bikes and of course their hundreds of tinnies? It will be these workers who will have access to our Country and the locals, both on land & sea, will be locked out, unable to access country any further north then Barred Creek, if we are lucky!

Meanwhile, back in Broome, Woodside continues to bribe and buy our small cash strapped community and individuals. They have purchased the services of our very own community grown Olympic and football stars to spread Woodside’s Indigenous employment propaganda. The strategy of hiring the Dampier Peninsula Cultural Tour Bus from Mamabulajin Resource Centre is just plain nauseating. and the strategy of holding invitations (very selected) only dinners for the old families of Broome to lobby for support is such a cheap tragically manipulating maneuver.

KLC turned this Court case into a “thoroughly pointless exercise” and not Joe Roe. These court processes are also a very effective way of distracting people from other issues that plague our community, a way of keeping people out of Country, keeping people tied into a process that will end in tears and start a generational fight and conflict.

But what the Federal Court and most people in Australia who have been following this story is how this whole issue just boils down to who wants the gas and who want to care for country.

Just the talk of this gas has had enormous social, cultural, emotional, physical, spiritual and financial ramifications which is creating a lot of hurt, mistrust and division into a community that not so long ago was receiving National Harmony Awards. The Social Impact Studies have been released as part of the Strategic Assessment. It outlines their predicted impacts, then outlines the mitigating management plan for those impacts and then our community will be abandoned and expected to develop our own strategies that will manage these horrific sickening impacts that will befall our community:

The majority of the people involved in compiling all the sections of the Strategy Assessment are compromised in their reporting and have shown total callous disregard to our communities and the health and well being of our environment. All of them have an invested interest (retaining their employment or securing contracts) in their reporting and their findings because they are either Government Departments’ employees or Woodside’s researchers. The Strategic Assessment Report cannot be objective where the writers are in fact the State Government – the proponent of taking land for the world’s largest LNG processing refineries in conjunction with Woodside the foundation operator.

The communities on the Dampier Peninsula will be left to deal with the social, economic and environmental fallout, they will leave us holding their baby (so to speak), a baby we never asked for, a baby we never wanted.

ABC The Drum - Evidence destroyed: the luckiest oil spill

ABC The Drum - Evidence destroyed: the luckiest oil spill

Thursday, December 2, 2010

WA - Registration decision - WC10/5-1 Jabirr Jabirr People - Search registration test decisions - National Native Title Tribunal

WA - Registration decision - WC10/5-1 Jabirr Jabirr People - Search registration test decisions - National Native Title Tribunal

WA - Registration decision - WC10/5-1 Jabirr Jabirr People

Application Name: Jabirr Jabirr People
Decision: Not Accepted
Decision Type: Full Decision
Decision Date: 01/10/2010
Tribunal file no: WC10/5-1
Federal Court file no.: WAD124/2010
State or Territory: Western Australia
First Application Date: 20/05/2010

This application has been tested against the conditions listed below:

S190B(2) - Identification of area subject to native title: Met
S190B(3) - Identification of native title claim groups: Met
S190B(4) - Identification of claimed native title: Met
S190B(5) - Factual basis for claimed native title: Met
S190B(6) - Prima facie case: Met
S190B(7) - Physical connection: Met
S190B(8) - No failure to comply with section 61A: Met
S190B(9) - No extinguishment etc of claimed native title: Met
S190C(2) - Information etc required by sections 61 & 62: Met
S190C(3) - No previous overlapping claim groups: Not Met
S190C(4) - Identity of claimed native title holders: Met

Browse LNG Precinct - Department of State Development

Browse LNG Precinct - Department of State Development

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

LNG Precinct Strategic Assessment Report (draft for public comment), released Monday 13 December.

The Browse LNG Precinct Strategic Assessment Report (draft for public comment), will be released on Monday 13 December.

Department of State Development invites members only of Browse LNG Precinct Stakeholder Reference Group the pre-release of the Strategic Assessment Report (draft for public comment) on Friday 10 December in Broome.

There will be two identical presentation sessions held on 10 December. Either 10 am – 11:30 am or 1 pm – 2:30 pm. The presentation session will be a chance for members of Browse LNG Precinct Stakeholder Reference Group to first to see the online comment system – ‘uEngage’ – in action! The system apparently will allow you to download sections of the document Browse LNG Precinct Stakeholder Reference Group. quickly and make your comments throughout the document.

Date Friday 10 December, 2010

Times 10 am – 11:30 am or 1 pm – 2:30 pm

Venue Mecure Hotel, Port Light Room, Weld Street Broome

Following is a flow of correspondence received today from the Department of State Development.

Thank you for the information pertaining to the release of the Browse LNG Strategic Assessment to the Stakeholders reference group on the 10th of Dec. However, I have a few inquires:

After a telephone conversation with yourself last month you informed me that the DSD will be conducting a three day Open Public Information Forums on the Strategic Assessment with the Community of Broome. Could you please advise when and where these forums will be taking place?

– when we spoke you made a very good point – that the idea of a forum for questions and answers on the document as it was released was not helpful as people had not had a chance to read it and digest it. I took that point on board – and consulted with others. We have now decided to have the open question and answer period in the new year after the public has had a chance to digest the material – but in plenty of time before the end of the public comment period.

Will other people from the community be invited/ or can they attend this above mentioned release?

The start of the Public Comment Period is officially Monday 13th December – but we wanted the opportunity to present the information to those members of the public who have been helpful during the process – prior to the official start. If there are specific people who you think would like to be there – who have not been invited - I would be delighted if you could provide their details to Barbara and she will officially invite them. Only people who have rsvp’d will be able to attend – so the official invitation process will manage that.

When and in what format will the Strategic Assessment be released to the public?

The Strategic Assessment Report will be available on the EPA and DSD’s website. It will also be available through the special portal we have contracted – which will make the submissions process much easier for everyone (if you chose to go through that process). We will have the SAR and Appendices also available on CD. There will be copies for viewing in Broome at the Shire and Library and the DSD office. We will have hard copies also available.

How long (number of weeks) will the Assessment be open for public comment?

The public comment period will be for 12 weeks. That is until Tuesday (because Monday is a public holiday) 8th March.

Could you please provide me with two hard copies of the completed report at the meeting on the 10th?

We anticipate providing a copy of at least the Executive Summary to each attendee on the day.

Friday, November 26, 2010

12000 Protest Postcards to the Prime Minister

Michael Caton of 'The Castle" fame, Neil McKenzie Jabirr Jabirr and Nik Wevers representing the Broome Community NO GAS campaign delivered the following postcards to Parliament House in Canberra.

Dear Prime Minister,

The Commonwealth Government is responsible for the final sign off on the LNG hub proposed for James Price Point on the coast just north of Broome.
It makes no sense to destroy the environmental and cultural values of Broome and the Kimberley coast when there are alternatives. Pipe the gas to the Pilbara or process it on a floating LNG hub.
Gough Whitlam understood the value of the Great Barrier Reef.
Bob Hawke understood the value of the Franklin River.
Prime Minister, you have an historic opportunity to protect the values of this unspoilt part of the world. Don’t let the Kimberley become an industrial wasteland.
Say NO to a gas hub on the Kimberley coast.

Yours sincerely,
12,000 Australians.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

No Gas at James Price Point Prime Minister

12,000 postcards to the Prime Minister have been signed by people primarily in Broome but also from right across the country. It is expected that the postcards will be handed over this week in Canberra. Video from Wyldeclan

Monday, November 15, 2010

Woodside drilling convoy turned back by babies and old ladies.

Despite an undertaking last Friday by Woodside to Goolarabooloo Senior Law Man Joseph Roe that no work would be carried out this week on the site of the proposed gas processing refinery at James Price Point, Woodside went ahead and dispatched a convoy from Broome at 4.30am this morning.

The Woodside/Hagstrom convoy included: a drill rig; a large truck with tank and pumping systems; a semi trailer carrying two tracked vehicles with water tanks; an ambulance; and numerous security personnel.

The convoy turned back at Quondong this morning by a small group of concerned citizens from the Broome Community ‘NO GAS’ who have sent out a strong message that Woodside will be opposed at every turn.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Hagstrom Drilling Doing Woodside's Dirty Work


November 11, 2010

Machinery rolls on to James Price Point site following Minister Burke’s visit

At the very same time as Federal Environment Minister Burke was visiting James Price Point for the first time in his new portfolio this morning, Woodside was loading machinery onto trucks at the Broome port in readiness to head out to the site for work to begin.

Broome-based environment group Environs Kimberley has called on the Environment Minister to clarify the role that the Australian government will play in assessing the proposal for gas refineries at James Price Point.

Preliminary survey ground-disturbing works have already begun on site, meanwhile a landclearing application is being challenged by Traditional Owners in the Federal Court.

“The Minister assured people in the Kimberley today that the final environmental approvals for this process are his responsibility alone – but if works are already beginning on one site, prior to the federal government formally selecting a site where this development should occur, the community could be forgiven for lacking confidence in this decision making process.

The Broome Shire Council has a confused position on this issue, the state government is doggedly pursuing James Price Point as the only site for this development, and the Australian Government apparently has yet to come to a view as to where this development should be located. How on earth is the community to make sense of this?

“We would like to know why these works are being conducted prior to any decision on the gas refinery by the Minister for the Environment.” said Environs Kimberley Director Martin Pritchard.

Media Contact:

Martin Pritchard 0427 548 075

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

No Gas – Yes Water!

Statue of Achilles thniskon (dying) at the Corfu Achilleion.

Do Broome residents and the communities on the Dampier Peninsula really understand how water is the Achilles' heel of the proposed world’s largest LNG refinery being landed at James Price Point?

Are the Broome and Dampier communities aware that currently, millions of litres of water, directly from the Broome Bore-fields are being barged by Mermaid Supply Base to Barrow Island for the Gorgon Project?

The Company, apparently purchased a barge in Singapore earlier this year for the purpose of carting our Broome water. Round trips from Broome to Barrow Island on a fortnightly basis are being undertaken in order to meet the shortfall of the Water Corporation in the Pilbara.

Broome’s water supply is being moved through the Broome Port Authority, which is supplied by the Water Corporation and monitored by the WA Department of Water. Recent correspondence with the Broome Port Authority clearly states that the Broome bore-fields are currently carrying the additional stress of providing the Water Corporation in the Pilbara with water because there is a major water shortage. There is no water available for one of the largest industrial zones in Australia. (Refer to sidebar opposite.)

Are the Broome's bore-fields going to have to bear the stress of providing additional water not only to the proposed world's largest LNG refinery to be located south of James Price Point, (This is expected to use up to 51,oooML when in production according to DSD’s Browse Liquefied Natural Gas Precinct Infrastructure Assessment Study, page 18.) but also the world’s second biggest refinery being built at Barrow Island for Gorgon?

Gorgon is still in its very early construction stages of infrastructure development and already there is a need to embezzle water from the Kimberley, surely this should be ringing alarm bells across our Nation, our State, our region and our local communities? It also raises very serious questions about the Federal Government’s Department for Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities lack of capacity and professional foresight not to have identified that water (like everywhere else in Australia ) is going to be a major issue for these massive industrial projects.

“The complexity and scale of Gorgon are unprecedented — a long-term, technically challenging, complex energy development exemplifying a dramatic advancement of engineering know-how and environmental stewardship.” However, after all the fanfare and the adjective packed language, the fact of the matter is that major DOUBTS have emerged because the giant $50 billion Gorgon gas project has NO WATER.

“More than AUD$20 billion has been awarded in Gorgon contracts including the fabrication and assembly of the main LNG modules, construction of the 2.1km LNG jetty and marine structures, LNG tanks construction and offshore pipe lay. Other contracts awarded include the Construction Village, Initial accommodation, general utilities, telecommunications, site preparation and site development.” But they still have no water.

The Project’s foundation Joint Venture Participants – Chevron (approximately 47%) ExxonMobil (25 percent) Shell had (25%) and the three new participants: Osaka Gas (1.25%), Tokyo Gas (1%) and Chubu Electric Power (0.417%). But they still have no water. Are these joint venture participants’ bankers or their shareholders aware that there is no water for their investments?

Consider the Department of Water’s own report[1] Improved groundwater resource management through better groundwater monitoring. A review of groundwater monitoring, April 2009 Volume 1.

(Please note that direct quotes from the above mentioned report are highlighted in red) This report clearly states

"Demand for groundwater is increasing in Broome for irrigated horticulture and town water supply". The location of Broome on a peninsula requires careful, ongoing management of groundwater resources to prevent saltwater intrusion. [2]

4.6.2 Current monitoring
The level of groundwater monitoring by the Kimberley Region is not adequate for current needs. Given the sensitivity of the Broome groundwater area to potential saltwater intrusion, it is a concern that this groundwater resource is not being monitored.

4.6.3 Gaps
The level of groundwater monitoring by the Kimberley Region is not adequate for current needs. Given the sensitivity of the Broome groundwater area to potential saltwater intrusion, it is important this groundwater resource is better monitored. For the past year, there has been no groundwater monitoring of the 22 bores in the Broome groundwater area due to no dedicated funding for groundwater monitoring. In contrast, current monitoring of the Ord Irrigation Scheme is considered adequate for groundwater management purposes.

Outside of the main abstraction areas, there is no recommended groundwater monitoring program. It will be necessary for a comprehensive review of potential groundwater monitoring bores and assessing the need for any additional regional
groundwater monitoring.[3]

4.6.4 Recommended monitoring
It is highly recommended that groundwater monitoring of all regional monitoring bores at Broome is resumed as soon as possible.

Given these facts and recommendations from the Department of Water’s own report, how is it that the Broome Bore-fields (already affected by saltwater intrusions) are now being called upon to top up the Water Corporations’ short fall in the Pilbara?

What is this shortfall and how did this situation come about?

Why does the Kimberley Region’sl Department of Water have no understanding of these activities?

Why doesn’t the Water Corporation in Perth have any answers to questions like: how much water is being provided from the Broome Bore-fields to the Gorgon project?

How much water are the Broome Bore-fields providing to the thousands of drilling rigs and platforms operating out in the North West Shelf and the Browse Basin’s oil and gas fields?

When, how and who approved this carriage of Broome water to the Gorgon project ?

Why are we told to turn off our sprinklers and not wash our cars when millions and millions of water is shipped out of our bore-fields surreptitiously, and without question?

Why is there a shortfall of water in the Pilbara anyway? Research suggests to Redhand that given the current recorded saturation of benzene emissions in the Pilbara and given the facts that benzene can: quickly evaporate into the air, be carried over long distances, attach to water particles, be released into soil, break down quickly and contaminate groundwater it is obvious that the Pilbara groundwater would also be saturated with benzene BTEX, toluene, ethylbenzene and xylene.

In 2008, there was no groundwater monitoring undertaken in the Pilbara. There are a large number of potential monitoring bores installed throughout the region; however, a lack of dedicated funding and a recommended program for groundwater monitoring has seen little to no groundwater measurement undertaken in the past five years.

There is no monitoring being carried out in the Pilbara on groundwater, Redhand suspects that there is no monitoring of toxins within these precious groundwater sources either.

It is totally incomprehensible. How could the Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities sign off on the Gorgon project without any Water Management Plan being submitted or any real clear understanding of how this massive industrial refinery was going to access water ? Why didn’t the Federal Government comprehend WA’s Environmental Protection Authority’s opposition to the Gorgon project because they had identified major environmental flaws in the whole concept?

How convenient that Barrow Island is exempt from the Rights in Water and Irrigation Act 1914, which governs the regulation of water resources in Western Australia?

4.5.3 Gaps

There is no current groundwater monitoring by the North West (Pilbara) Region. This is not considered appropriate or suitable for groundwater management requirements. There is a need to fully assess the condition of monitoring bores and address access problems. The focus of this should initially be at Millstream and selected alluvial aquifers along the Pilbara Coast.

4.5.4 Recommended monitoring

In order to resume groundwater monitoring, it is recommended that 17 monitoring bores at Robe and Fortescue Rivers are initially monitored twice per year. This monitoring data will support existing Water Smart projects being undertaken to support the development of a future statutory management plan. There are another potential 84 bores (including 10 bore at Millstream and 32 bores in the West Canning Basin) that can be added to improve the network.

How much water has been provided to the Water Corporation in the Pilbara from the Broome Bore-fields, through the Port of Broome?

Where is this water unloaded?

Where is it being stored?

What is this water being used for?

How is this water being used or monitored?

How much water has been provided to the oil and gas industries through the Broome Port over the last three years?

How much more water is going to be provided to the Gorgon project? And for how long will this unacceptable and highly questionable situation continue?

Water is and will be the deadly weakness for the WA State Government and Woodside et al. In spite of their overall strength, the multinationals might flex their muscle with their dollars, their technical fabrication and their spin and the power that dictatorial governments think they have, it will be water or more importantly the lack of and quality of water which will lead to their inevitable downfall. Let’s hope that their madness will not be at the expense of our water, our environment and the future health of following generations.

While the mythological origin of Achilles' heel refers to a physical vulnerability, in this case water, it is people and their human attributes of survival that will eventually lead to the destruction of the energy intensive lunacy that continues to justify the notion of planting yet another CO2 intensive gas refinery on our planet.

No Gas – Yes Water!

Improved groundwater resource management through better groundwater monitoring. A review of groundwater monitoring, April 2009 Volume 1