As you will be aware there are (at least) three Kimberley environment-related matters before the courts at the moment:
Application in Federal Court from Traditional Owners (TOs) and KLC to split the native title claim over James Price Point due to now separate native title claims;
Action in WA Supreme Court against government and Woodside in relation the alleged approvals it has been given for its current works at James Price Point;
Action in the WA Mining Warden's Court against Rey Resources application for a mining lease for its proposed "Duchess Paradise" coal mine near the Fitzroy River.
Today, both 1 and 3 were 'up'. Tomorrow is the next hearing for 2 - although this now likely to be deferred until Monday.
In the Federal Court, the KLC buckled at the last minute under immense pressure from the WA government and Woodside (delivered via a "notice of default of agreement" and a "notice of suspension of all benefits") and agreed to withdraw the application for the splitting of the land claim. The applicants (TOs/KLC) have agreed to go away and meet to decide whether they want to continue the application, and accept the risk of action against them by government and Woodside. Where and when the big meeting happens remains to be seen but hopefully it will be better run than the last KLC-held 'agreement' meeting!
In the Mining Wardens Court the WA EDO, representing TO Dr Anne Poelina, spent all day arguing for a 'stay' of the mining lease application pending the outcome of the current EPA assessment of the coal mine proposal. The Warden has reserved his decision. Solicitor Josie Walker from EDO thinks the Warden is disposed to grant the stay which is a good outcome. Rey's lawyers argued that Dr Poelina is in cahoots with the Wilderness Society - implying she does not have 'clean hands' in the matter...
Then tomorrow (or Monday) the matter of stopping Woodside's works at JPP will be heard again on the issue of 'agreement on facts', prior to a full hearing in the Appeals Court at a date to be determined.
So, all matters are still 'live' and, as usual, we will have to await further hearings and deliberations to know if we win.
Meanwhile, the Broome Shire Council could not vote on the Improvement Plan proposed over James Price Point area this afternoon, at an Ordinary Council Meeting because there was not a quorum.