Saturday, October 15, 2011

Complusary Poisoning Acquired Country at James Price Point

Meanwhile, Woodside are acting as if they have already Compulsory Acquired Country.

Where the process is currently ‘at’

EPA is currently undertaking assessment of the SAR and will produce its report and recommendations to the WA Environment Minister probably in the 1st quarter of 2012.
The federal minister needs to have a high degree of confidence in a ‘Future Act’ under this strategic assessment process.

Meeting with Broome and Others
EPA has decided to take the whole Board up to Broome to view the site and meet with key people. EPA are thinking a day and a half in Broome and on-site. EPA do not want an ‘all-in’ public forum or meeting even when that is exactly what the Broome community has been requesting from the EPA. The community want an open Q/A forum and for all members of the community be afforded the respect to be able to understand the environmental ramifications of the proposed project and continue their participation in the strategic assessment process.

The only reason the EPA Board is coming to Broome at all is because members of the Broome Community and environmental groups appealed to them, to do so. It’s inconceivable that the EPA Board do not want to engage with the very people who submitted the original requests. The last thing the Broome Community needs is a modified stakeholders gathering of other Gov departments and selected NGOs representatives or more copies of ‘FAQ’ sheets, with their own questions and their own answers. The community has had enough FAQ sheets, from Woodside and the Department of State Development. The Broome Community simple just want an open community forum and the opportunity to be informed, consulted and engaged with.

Appeals process
Appeals on the EPA's report are lodged with the Appeals Convenor following the EPA’s report being presented to the WA Minister. The Appeals Convenor assesses appeals and will report to the Minister on (his) findings. The EPA then examines the Appeals Convenors report and findings and provides its “Section 106 advice” back to the Minister. That will be the end of the EPA’s involvement in the process.
Then, the WA Minister finally makes his big final decision (once he’s got the ‘OK’ from Premier and Cabinet), based on EPA’s and Appeals Convenor’s reports and cross-examinations. The Minister has the power to establish a different ‘independent’ appeals process to streamline the way the appeal is conducted. This has happened previously.

Then EVERYTHING goes off to Feds and Burke - who have supposedly been doing their own homework all this time....
Dinosaur Tracksites
EPA says that there are only about 3 people in Australia who have sufficient expertise in this area. DSD do not trust the Australian scientists because they want to protect their national and international heritage and advocacy against the industrial proposal that will not doubt see these tracksites/landscapes totally destroyed.

A peer-reviewed report will need to be provided by DSD’s foreign scientists, a Dr Martin Lockley, from the University of Colorado, and Mr Rich McCrae, who works with the University of Alberta. They were asked to do that survey however; their work would have been alot more effective if they had taken up the Goolarabooloo offer of showing them the sites. However, they were only working the areas where the proposed pipelines are planning to be laid and the precinct footprint. By the time they walked the beaches to access these areas, the tide usually beat them. Needless to say by the time they had followed their DSD driven brief, they had little too no time to actually see the dinosaur track sites. These scientists engaged by DSD are expected to provide their report to the EPA at the end of October.

Will the EPA Board be releasing the new work on the dinosaur tracksites to the public as a Supplement to the SAR with an opportunity for 28 days for public comment? How will the EPA be able to make a decision if they actually have not seen the new peer reviewed report? For that matter how will their report be peered reviewed by someone who has never been there?

Degree of detail for Strategic Assessment

EPA said it is demanding a high level of detail for the most important of the - 55 Environment Management Plans (EMPs) that DSD says will be created post-approval to actually manage all the precincts impacts.

Is the EPA aware how many of these devious plans there will potentially be and how hard it will be to monitor and enforce them all?

It is so clear to everyone who has had any involvement in the strategic assessment that the whole process has been corrupted because the state government is the proponent of the project and the entire EPA’s strategic assessment Administrative Procedures have proven to be inadequate and in urgent need of revamping.

When will the EPA’s make it known publicly that in 1991(?) they signed a document stating that the vine thickets on Dampier Peninsula should not be destroyed?.

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