Thursday, October 25, 2012

Community call on Woodside to abandon drilling in sand dunes

Broome community members are calling on Woodside to abandon its plans to drill and excavate sand dunes as part of its investigation for port facilities for the proposed gas refineries at James Price Point.

The sand dunes and rare Monsoon Vine Thickets have been recommended for protection by the WA Environmental Protection Authority1 twice in the past twenty years because of their environmental significance and their cultural heritage values.

The WA Museum also recommended they be protected in 1989 because of their outstanding archaeological and cultural significance2.

Woodside need to read these previous recommendations for the protection of this area so they get an understanding of how sensitive and important they are environmentally and culturally,” said Broome Community No Gas Campaign spokesperson Nik Wevers.

Anyone who reads the government reports that recommended there be no disturbance to the west side of Manari Road will come to the conclusion that what Woodside is proposing is not acceptable. We are calling on them to abandon their clearing and drilling work in this area,” said Ms Wevers.

Such is the concern about Woodside’s plans that Community members have already begun mobilising to protest any destruction.

Many people in the community are concerned about Woodside’s plans and are organising to take action to protect the sand dunes. This coast is Broome’s backyard. It’s where people go to recharge after a hard working week in town, it’s not a place where we want to see drill rigs and excavators,” Ms Wevers said.

What we’re seeing is that the community who love that coast are saying they’re drawing a line in the sand and they’re going to stand up and be counted for this one,” Ms Wevers said.

Anyone who wants to help out should get in touch,” said Ms Wevers.
For further comment, please contact: Nik Wevers 0417 998 598


  1. Very interesting post on Goolarabooloo Facebook,they shared Red Broomes photo of Coleman meeting Netanyahu.
    This article gives a very clear insight into Woodsides plans.It ends with:

    "There is industry speculation that the Woodside-led Browse LNG project, which is the most advanced of the company’s growth ventures, will be declared uneconomic mid next year once Woodside has finished costings of a development including a processing plant
    at James Price Point, north of Broome" West Australian 24/10/12

    If this is the case,and I've lost count of the many posts on this very subject,then Woodside must not go onto the dunes,to do so with this information would be the worst case of criminal vandalism.

    1. Woodside vs Gazprom.

      Woodside want to build an LNG plant - Gazprom want a pipeline into Europe.

      investors were cheered on Monday by unconfirmed reports that Woodside would invest in the field at a $7 billion valuation, a figure that considerably exceeds the $4 billion to $5 billion previously estimated for the license.

      Coleman, who took over as CEO last May, has said he wants to expand Woodside's offshore operations, which currently include two projects valued at $1 billion in Australian waters. Coleman was in Burma recently to sign Woodside onto gas projects there.

      Woodside specializes in liquefaction of natural gas, or LNG. Thus its proposal differs greatly from those of its two reported rivals for the Leviathan stake - France's Total and Russia's Gazprom. They are both proposing to build an undersea pipeline to Europe.

      Trends in the gas market favor Woodside; intense competition in Europe has lowered the cost of natural gas to less than in Asia. Against that, it costs more to liquefy gas and transport it to distant markets.


      Woodside and the "worlds riskiest address"

      PORTFOLIO POINT: Woodside appears to be moving up the investment risk chain as it explores deals in Burma and Israel. But are investors ready for more risk?

      Israel and Burma are not low-risk countries, which is why Woodside Petroleum’s proposed entry into both countries raises doubts about its promise to take fewer risks – unless the prize is so big that management cannot resist the temptation.

      Whatever the correct answer, and a few interesting possibilities are starting to surface, the appeal of Woodside to conservative investors has declined.
      While such a pursuit is admirable, if not essential given the company’s failure to find local growth options, Woodside has an appalling record of mucking up all previous international growth forays, whether into the Gulf of Mexico, Libya, Kenya, or Mauritania on the west African coast.
      For investors jaded by the frequent failures of Australia’s biggest pure-play oil and gas company, an explanation of the potential move into two countries better known as trouble spots is clearly required, but not yet forthcoming.

      Ratings agencies such as Fitch would undoubtedly appreciate an explanation, having just upgraded its outlook for Woodside from negative to stable because of the “more conservative strategy” of the company’s chief executive, Peter Coleman.
      So, what is it that attracts Woodside to Israel and its near island neighbour, Cyprus?
      The attractions of the eastern Mediterranean are:
      •Huge gas discoveries by a consortium of US and Israeli companies in waters bordered by Israel, Lebanon and Cyprus;
      •A need for those companies to secure a partnership with a company that has LNG and deepwater gas production experience;
      •An invitation from the Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, for Australia to lend a hand; and
      •The pressure that investing in Israel might apply on Shell to sell its residual 23% stake in Woodside.
      Missing from the list of invitees to the Israeli gas party are the usual suspects of global oil and gas such as Coleman’s former employer, ExxonMobil, and Woodside’s biggest shareholder, Shell.


      The answer is that none of the oil majors dare invest directly in Israel or they risk jeopardising their much bigger investments in other, Arab-controlled (anti-Israel) Middle East countries.

      In other words, Israel is too hot for the oil majors to handle, but perhaps not for a small Australian company with growth ambitions, possibly in joint venture with a Far East partner such as Korea’s Daewoo, which is teaming up with Woodside in Burma.
      The aftershocks of a Woodside win could be profound, such as:
      •Elevating the company’s risk profile even higher, because a multi-billion-dollar LNG project in Israel would be a prime target for that country’s aggressive neighbours;
      •Force Shell to accelerate its sell-down of Woodside shares, a process started two years ago; and
      •If Shell sells, who could emerge with its 23% stake in Woodside.

      Whatever does occur in the next few weeks, investors would be wise to look at Woodside in a different way than they did as recently as last month.

      It is no longer the near-annuity they saw, reaping cash off domestic oil and gas production and paying handsome dividends.

      Woodside is a company chasing growth, but it’s doing it in a way which significantly raises risk (and the potential reward), and its past pursuits of global growth have all failed.

    3. Woodsides interest in high risk areas makes a very important point.

      From an investors point of view,financing Browse at JPP would be fraught with danger.

      The fact that the company in charge of this lousy project was also involved in adventures at "The Worlds Riskiest Address",
      and a couple of other scary places,would be cause for many sleepless nights.

      Not to mention the fact that their other forays have all resulted in failure.

      With the one exception - the NWS.

      And that one could soon be out of gas.


    EXPLORER Karoon Gas says deals with Japan's Inpex or the Woodside Petroleum-led Browse liquefied natural gas project, along with a $US13.8 billion ($13.28bn) Darwin LNG expansion, are options for the development of the ConocoPhillips-led Poseidon field in Western Australia's offshore Browse Basin.

    At its annual general meeting in Melbourne yesterday, Karoon told shareholders that following the Boreas-1 appraisal well drilled in the field this month, confidence was growing that commercial flows of between 100 and 250 million cubic feet a day from further wells on the field were likely.

  3. Every man and his dog knows that a massive processing plant onshore at jpp is too expensive, and is opposed by too many groups. Colemans a d$#khead for following barnett down the garden path this far. They are only doing this 'feed' study to appease barnett. I find it hard to believe they have applied for a section 18, and considering giong into the dunes. If they do i will be there, along with other community members in the hundreds i reckon.

    1. You're right.
      Everyone knows.
      So where are the "great Aboriginal" leaders now?
      Where is Dodson,Yu,and all the other high profile leaders?
      Bergman is complaining this morning that Buru have bulldozed some old tool making stuff 100 klms east of Broome.
      But he is quite happy to see Woodside bulldoze and drill the most significant Indigenous (and whitefella too for that matter) site around here - and take their money - but not a peep out of the lousy money faced bastard!
      God Almighty surely they can do better than this?
      What a mess.

      By the way,hats off to Teresa,Joe,Phil,and everyone standing strong for country.
      They must feel very let down by these other leaders who like to big note themselves but their words mean nothing,and their deeds are non existent.


    GDF-Suez, the French LNG player, and its partner energy company Santos, have received the go-ahead from the Federal Environment Minister for their Bonaparte Floating LNG production project offshore northwest Australia.

    The Bonaparte FLNG venture will be close to where Royal Dutch Shell is planning one of the first of such projects in the Prelude field of the Browse Basin.
    The Bonaparte project floating hull will be located above the gas field and about 250 kilometres west of the city of Darwin.
    "Importantly, the proponent will be required to adhere to all relevant measures to address the risk of a spill, including capacity to respond to a spill to protect the matters of National Environmental Significance," Burke said in his statement.


    Chevron strikes natural gas again off Australia coast

    Satyr-4 was drilled to a total depth of 2.8 miles, and operations had to be done in water two-thirds of a mile deep, giving some idea of the difficulty and technical expertise required in this type of work.

    This well lies in a permit area 75 miles northwest of Barrow Island. Chevron's Australia unit has a 50 percent interest in the site and is the operator. Shell Development (Australia) Pty and Mobil Australia Resources Co. each have a quarter stake.



    Murkowski said she met on Oct. 22 with Lamar McKay, chairman and president of BP America Inc.; John Minge, president of BP Exploration Alaska; Matt Fox, executive vice-president of exploration and production at ConocoPhillips; and Rich Kruger, president of ExxonMobil Production Co.

    It’s important for Alaska gas to be priced competitively in global markets to ensure development of a project that could cost up to $65 billion, the senator said. She also said she pressed the executives to move quickly and seize the opportunity to ship Alaska gas to Japan, South Korea, and other Pacific Rim customers.

    “Alaskans have waited 4 decades to see some benefit from their [ANS] gas,” Murkowski observed. “While Lower 48 markets may be oversupplied because of the shale boom, places like Japan and South Korea are willing to pay a premium for long-term supply contracts. But that window of opportunity will not remain open indefinitely.”


    The Panama Canal's expansion at a cost of more than $5 billion is set to have a dramatic impact on world trade patterns, in particular the LNG industry, and the project has already contributed to a surge in Asian participation in US LNG export ventures.

    The expansion will allow 80 percent of the almost 400 vessels in the global LNG carrier fleet to deliver LNG from new US export plants being constructed or planned along the Gulf coast of Louisiana and Texas, as well as Georgia and Maryland, to the premium LNG markets of Asia.



    stay tuned for more updates on that one!

    1. Buru can stop work while Collier investigates,so why not the same treatment for JPP and Yindjibarndi ?

      Mr Bergmann said Buru had been warned by traditional owners not to conduct ground disturbing works in the sandhills, which contained extensive evidence of human habitation.

      “The ‘Blue Hills’ is an area that had a high Aboriginal population,” he said.

      “There is rock art, grinding stones … there’s about 50 of them and spear sharpening tools in the area they’ve bulldozed. We’re talking about material that is 10, 20, 30 thousand years old.

      “We are outraged at the lack of respect Buru Energy has for Aboriginal people and our heritage; Buru Energy needs a lesson on how to work with Kimberley Aboriginal people.”
      Buru Energy executive director Eric Streitberg said all of Buru’s operations were conducted after heritage clearances were obtained from traditional owners.
      He said there were no sites registered with the Department of Indigenous Affairs in the area of the alleged disturbance.

      However, Buru had agreed to halt works while investigations were carried out.

      “As soon as Buru was made aware of the concerns, operations ceased in the area in question and the company will not conduct any further work in that area until all investigations are complete,” he said.

      A Department of Indigenous Affairs spokesman said the Aboriginal Heritage Act protected all Aboriginal sites even if they were not recorded on the register.

      The Department was advised of the allegation yesterday and responded immediately, he said.

  5. Bergman telling giant porkies to George Manning this morning.

    He is claiming no one knew about the oil and gas in the Canning Basin until recently.

    Not only has everyone known about it for years but THE KLC were bragging about the "Canning Basin gas" being processed at JPP years ago!

    It never gets any better - here we go again.


      Goolarabooloo &LHT shared Michael Orlovs status update.

      There has been a great deal said and written about the legislation currently before the WA State Parliament, in particular the level of protection it does/does not provide against the risk of future development. What is being ignored in the debate is the fact that no parliament can bind itself or a future parliament no
      t to change a law. In other words, whatever may be the true effect of the current proposed legislation, the present State government and any government of the future that commands the necessary majority to pass legislation of its choice, can simply repeal or amend the legislation. The suggestion that the proposed legislation can "stop" the State from implementing its agenda in the Kimberly is simply nonsense. Wayne Bergman in particular, as a lawyer, should know better.

  6. From STK

    On Tuesday Lateline ran a story built around a report: “Developing the West Kimberley’s Resources” that the program breathlessly presented as a “secret plan” to industrialise the region, unlock its resources and fuel a new minerals boom. In fact, the report has been around since 2005 and has been widely read.

    The real question in the Kimberley is: can miners and governments learn the lessons of past developments in Australia and develop an enlightened policy that benefits them, the local landholders and the national interest?
    So what should governments, miners and developers be doing? Its relatively simple.

    1) Follow the UN protocol of Free, Informed, Prior Consent for the development of the traditional lands of Indigenous people, even where company lawyers might suggest that this is unnecessary or can be bulldozed over.

    2) Provide Indigenous peoples with a partnership and revenue-sharing arrangement in the development of the mine or project, with any returns invested in the long term educational and infrastructure needs of the community.

    3) Create contracts which benefit local Indigenous companies.

    4) Provide a guaranteed level of employment for local Indigenous people in the operations of the project.

    5) The ultimate benchmark, learning from the Pilbara, is that there should be no poverty in any Indigenous community within 500km of the mine or development site.

    If these protocols are guaranteed, then whichever company develops the vast minerals of the region will make potentially hundreds of billions of dollars. It is not just that such an agreement is a special interest or land owner interest.
    Despite many decades of experience, company bosses and politicians alike make the mistake of thinking that they can get agreements to proceed by consulting with one or two token Indigenous leaders. The token figures then charge great sums to go about running mock Western style meetings in which the consultations take place.

    The facts are that by properly negotiating with traditional people and being forced to listen to their concerns, by bringing them in as full partners in the project, employing them in the project and paying due regard to ceremony and custom, great prosperity ensues.

    By the way, those pink diamonds mined at Argyle are the scales of the sacred Barramundi. I can’t understand why they are not more actively marketed that way and why Miriwoong, Malngin, Kija and Worla women and their stories about the female creative Barrimundi dreaming being are not featured in Paris and Milan. Mining companies still have so much to learn.

  7. So much for the food bowl - Chinese to grow sugar cane on a massive scale.WA tax payers stumped up hundreds of millions for this?

    Concerns have been raised about the Department of Water's proposal for managing water released from the East Kimberley's Ord River.

    The Ord Surface Water Allocation Plan will dictate how much water flows to sectors like irrigated agriculture and tourism.

    When the draft plan was released in May, 14 submissions were received.

    The ABC has obtained a copy of some of the 14 responses submitted to the department during the public comment period.

    Some raised concerns about proposed changes to licences and water allocation.

    One stakeholder argues the plan breaches the National Water Initiative, a pledge signed by the Western Australian Government, to adhere to nationwide objectives on water use.

    Another submitted there will not be enough water to grow sugarcane, which a Chinese consortium is tipped to reintroduce to the Ord on a massive scale.

    The Department of Water declined to comment but in a written response says it is committed to an ongoing and consultative process on the management of the Ord River.

    A spokesman says follow-up meetings may be held in regard to issues raised through the public comment period.

    The revised plan is expected to be adopted next year.

  8. A familliar theme from Canada.

    A government review panel has denied dozens of First Nations people who live downstream from Shell Canada Ltd.’s Jackpine oil sands mine in Alberta the right to participate in environmental assessment hearings for the mine’s expansion, apparently due to problems with their applications.

    At the same time, the panel overlooked the same problem in the application of the Canadian unit of a large French oil company and granted it standing to appear. Among those who were denied standing was Bill Erasmus, Dene National chief and Assembly of First Nations regional chief.
    Ms. Deranger says she emailed the panel specifically asking for details on how she and other aboriginal people who were planning on making oral presentations at the hearings should apply, but the panel responded to her after the deadline.

    “The process wasn’t clear,” she said. “Instead of dealing with the issues at hand, they just make the process so complicated, that they can axe people from participating based on procedural reasons.”

    First Nations people were not the only ones who were apparently unaware of the detailed hearing submission requirements. In the panel’s decision letter, the panel noted that Total E&P Canada Ltd., an oil sands company operating in the region and the wholly owned subsidiary of French oil-giant Total SA, did not comply with the application requirements.

    The panel, however, decided to grant Total interested-party status despite this.

    1. Which all goes to show the "Goodwill" colonies rep was,after all,only skin deep.

      In fact it quite likely wasn't even that.

      Perhaps "Superficial" is a better word.

      Once the whitefella decided he liked the place,to dig it up and sell it of course,the dirty end of the business didn't waste any time getting going.

      But the political class are sticking to their old diplomatic aces even if all their credibility has been removed.

  9. Very interesting.On SBS this afternoon a documentary that examined Burma's ambitions to build ICBM's and nuclear warheads.Lots of maps and intel from defectors and people willing to speak from inside the country.

    Eventually they got to the bit where the question was asked : "How did they get the money for all this."

    The answer : "LNG."

    Several years ago TOTAL and CONOCO were given the license to develope a large natural gas field and build the plant.The billions the Generals made from this financed the research.Equipment was supplied by Germany,high tech machines to make parts,and North Korea - the missle and nuclear know how.

    The US Navy have intercepted ships from North Korea and warned Burma (Myanmar) that they are in breach of the nuclear embargo.

    The Burmese are developing more gas fields and will be making many more billions selling to the Chinese.More money for their nuclear ambitions.

    Total and Conoco are free to operate,of course.

    But the really interesting bit is that in the last couple of weeks WOODSIDE have farmed into oil and gas blocks offshore Burma.

    Presumably no one in Canberra is concerned that Woodside will be financing a future nuclear power that has made it well known - we will be respected,or else we will shoot (our ICBM's) and ask questions later.

  10. SHELL’S Prelude floating LNG project will be a hot topic at the Deep Offshore Technology conference and exhibition in Perth next month.
    Prelude FLNG is a good chance to be mentioned in the welcoming address by Shell Development Australia technical and Prelude vice president Bruce Steenson.

    In a keynote address during the opening plenary session, Shell Australia country chair Ann Pickard will discuss the role of floating technology in unlocking deepwater opportunities.

    The conference will feature panel discussions on deepwater projects and the status and outlook of FLNG systems, with panellists from Shell, Total, Saipem and Statoil.


    Technip has predicted floating LNG projects will proliferate as onshore ventures face delays and cost overruns, Bloomberg reports.

    “There is more and more of a realisation that floating LNG could be a solution that is more cost-effective and time-effective than traditional onshore LNG,” Technip chief executive officer Thierry Pilenko reportedly said.

    Technip is building Shell’s Prelude LNG vessel and will be involved in a GDF Suez competition to look at the feasibility of its Bonaparte venture, Pilenko said, adding he “wouldn’t be surprised if there are additional projects” announced next year for the Australian market.


    Sabine Pass expansion

    “When we marketed the project at Sabine Pass, clearly we had more demand than we could satisfy,” Cheniere vice president of trading Nicolas Zanen reportedly said in Singapore today.

    It made sense to look at expanding to a fifth and a sixth train for liquefying gas, he said.

    Adding two trains would increase the plant’s capacity from 18 million tonnes per annum to 27MMtpa.

    According to Bloomberg, Zanan said no timeline for enlarging the facility had been set.

    GAIL India, BG Group and Korea Gas have all signed agreements to buy Sabine Pass LNG.

    “Customers come to us and say they want to buy LNG from the US, they want to buy based on Henry Hub,” Zanen said.

    “We have a good idea of what the demand is like. The US gas price is very cheap and they want to benefit from that. They want to diversify as well.”


    A World Bank-led conference sponsored by majors including BP and Chevron has agreed to cut gas flaring by 30% over five years, the BBC reports.

    The conference convened the Global Gas Flaring Reduction partnership, started by the World Bank 10 years ago, the BBC said.

    The World Bank reportedly said flaring still wasted 140 billion cubic metres of gas a year – equivalent to a third of the annual gas consumption in the European Union – and emits about 400 million tonnes of CO2 equivalent.


    New Standard Energy has hit more shale than it expected at Nicolay-1 in the Canning Basin, telling the market initial wireline logs show the Goldwyer formation more shale-laden than pre-drill estimates.

    It told investors that the logs confirmed the presence of the Nita and Goldwyer formations, with associated elevated gas readings observed in mud logs while drilling though the formations.

    However, it repeated its cautionary note that investors should not get too excited until New Standard and joint venture partner ConocoPhillips were able to carry out further tests on cores.

  11. from BCNGC


    Woodside has applied for permission to enter and damage the sand-dune country west of Manari Road near James Price Point. The outcome of their Section 18 Heritage clearance application will be known very shortly. It is possible they will try to move drilling rigs into their compound any day now.

    This particular country has
    enormous cultural and environmental values. There are several heritage sites, the Song Cycle between Broome and One Arm Point passes through there and the monsoon vine thickets are a listed Threatened Ecological Community.

    The Broome Community No Gas Campaign applies the following non-violent direct action (NVDA) aims to all its activities:
    To delay or stop work
    To gain media attention
    To build community awareness and response capacity.

    If you want to help ensure that this important country is not desecrated, make sure you’re plugged into what’s happening and are ready to respond - maybe at short notice.

    The best way to be ready? Get your number onto our gas phone list. Then notices of actions you can join - where to go, what to bring and what to expect – will appear on your mobile! If you want to help, email with your name and mobile number and we'll make sure our action alerts appear on your phone.

    Other ways? Network with your friends and get one of them to forward you the No Gas phone messages AND come to campaign planning meetings held every Wednesday evening at 5pm at Lotteries House.