Friday, January 25, 2013

Number of land acquisition mistakes unknown - ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)

Number of land acquisition mistakes unknown - ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation):
The State Government says it still does not know how many projects are vulnerable to legal challenge because of mistakes made acquiring land.

Late last year, the Government was forced to restart the compulsory acquisition of land north of Broome for the Browse LNG project because the correct process had not been followed.

It was then revealed the same problem, a failure to notify the Native Title Tribunal of the Government intention to take the land, had been made on acquisitions dating back to the 1990's.


  1. Remember when Ferguson gave BP permission to do this just after the Macondo well blew in 2010?

    Macondo was in 1550 metres of water just off the Gulf coast where there are major drilling companies everywhere.

    The conditions were like those of a millpond but it still took BP from the 20 April to the 15 of July to stop the flow.The well was permanently sealed on the 19 September 2010 after nearly 5 million barrels of oil had spilled into the Gulf of Mexico.

    The environment of the Gulf,and the health of it's citizens,continue to deteriorate to this day,and will for decades to come.The place will never be the same again,just like the Exxon Valdez in Alaska.

    Tales of death,sickness and suicide.


    BP to drill for oil in the Great Australian Bight

    by: Paul Cleary
    From:The Australian
    January 25, 201312:00AM

    BRITISH energy giant BP plans to proceed with drilling four exploration wells in the Great Australian Bight after its extensive seismic survey confirmed the oil-bearing potential of the region.

    BP's seismic survey, covering 12,000sq km, has prompted the company to proceed to the next phase and seek federal government approval to drill exploration wells in the deep water region that is buffeted by the Roaring Forties.

    Senior government sources said BP could have backed away from its work program if the seismic survey had indicated a low chance of finding oil.

    They said the decision to proceed to the drilling phase was significant.

    A BP spokesman said the company had always believed the area was "prospective".

    Prior to BP's securing the rights to explore in the area, federal government geologists had dredged oil-bearing "source rocks" from the ocean floor.

  2. cont...BP to drill for oil in the Great Australian Bight

    Subject to approvals, the company could begin drilling from late next year, although this depended on the availability of drilling rigs, the spokesman said.

    The company was still analysing the data collected from the seismic survey and it planned to take soil samples from the seabed within the next six months.

    "The drilling program will require us to gather a large amount of environmental and technical data before we complete an environment plan for the regulator to consider," he said.

    "One of the first data-gathering surveys will be a geotechnical investigation of the seabed."

    Three of the four blocks awarded to BP have maximum water depths of about 4500m, while two of the blocks overlap the Great Australian Bight Marine Park.

    The spokesman said the company had not ruled out seeking permission to drill inside this park.

    The federal government has recently shown a tendency to reject proposals to drill for oil in sensitive areas.

    This month, Environment Minister Tony Burke rejected an application by US giant Apache Energy to explore near the World Heritage-listed Ningaloo Marine Park off the West Australian coast.

    Mr Burke said Apache's application was "clearly unacceptable" under environmental laws.

    The government's green stand may reflect the fact that it is an election year and it sees the potential to win votes from the Greens.

    BP's application is unlikely to be submitted to the government before the election later this year.

    The Conservation Council of South Australia said yesterday that the Great Australian Bight was one of the most biologically diverse environments in Australia, rivalling the diversity of the Great Barrier Reef.

    "We are very concerned about the proposal by BP to drill exploration wells in the area, including parts of a marine park," said the council's chief executive Tim Kelly.

    "These waters are very deep, with some areas deeper than in the Gulf of Mexico where the Deepwater Horizon oil spill took weeks to stop and created lasting environmental damage.

    "Unlike the Gulf of Mexico we don't have the resources or equipment in Southern Australia to respond quickly, should there be in incident."

    Worldwide Fund for Nature marine spokesman Paul Gamblim said the government was opening up a new frontier for oil and gas in an area that is important for whales.

    He was concerned because of the treacherous marine conditions and warned that the remote location could make it difficult to attend to any accidents.

    "You are adding risk upon risk here. It becomes more dangerous and difficult to work in this area," he said.

    1. Oh good o chaps!

      Anyone seen a Walrus lately?


      BP working away on Bight plan

      Friday, 25 January 2013

      BP is “very excited” by the work done in the Great Australian Bight so far, saying it plans to have an environmental plan for drilling four wells in the region to the relevant authority by the end of the year.

  3. The jostling for positions continue in the Levant Basin where Woodside has joined Noble in an Israeli LNG venture.


    Cyprus will issue licenses to a consortium comprised of Italy's ENI and South Korea's Kogas on Thursday for the exploration of hydrocarbons in three areas off the east Mediterranean island, its energy minister told Reuters.

    "It is very important because we are moving ahead with development of our reserves," said Neoclis Sylikiotis, who is Cyprus's Commerce, Industry and Tourism Minister.

    A signing ceremony was scheduled on Thursday morning, he said. Separate talks with France's Total which is also bidding for a license elsewhere were proceeding well and Sylikiotis said he hoped for a conclusion soon.


    "The discovery of hydrocarbons (around) Cyprus, in conjunction with those found in the wider Mediterranean region, create new realities and prospects for the country," Cypriot energy minister Neoclis Sylikiotis said.

    Cyprus sits in the Levant Basin, an area of the eastern Mediterranean thought to be rich in largely untapped reserves.

    U.S. Noble Energy reported discovering between 5 and 8 trillion cubic feet (tcf) in Cyprus's first attempt to find natural resources offshore in Dec. 2011. Neighbouring Israel has made major natural gas discoveries there in the past few years.

    Turkey, which lies north of Cyprus, has in the past voiced objections to the island exploring for oil or gas. Cyprus was split in a 1974 Turkish invasion after a brief Greek inspired coup and the exploration is being carried out by the internationally recognised Greek Cypriot government.


    "There are very strong indications of gas, and possibly oil, in the area," Sylikiotis said, referring to the offshore maritime area known as the exclusive economic zone.

    He said there would be synergies from the licensing to ENI and Kogas, since two of the blocks run in the path of a pipeline planned to transport gas from the Noble concession to a terminal which will convert gas into its liquefied form onshore.


    What Turkey possesses to compensate for its energy supply deficiency is the best geographic position between the world's second-largest natural gas market, continental Europe, and the substantial gas reserves of Russia, the Caspian Basin and the Middle East. This provides Turkey with the opportunity to be the major European gas hub and a vital actor in gas politics across the whole region. The Caspian, Russian, Iraqi, Mediterranean, Balkan, and Black Sea gas developments will all be affected by what policymakers decide in Ankara.

    As the web of regional gas projects grows ever more complex, Turkey will likely become more and more influential as a link -- or a blockage. Turks are not content only to be a simple “bridge” over which energy flows; they aspire to become a regional “hub,” extracting greater value for the oil, gas pipelines and power interconnections, and turn this role to economic and foreign/security policy gains.

    Being a regional energy hub is of course not just having pipelines crisscrossing your territory. For Turkey to function as a gas hub, it must be able to import enough gas to satisfy both domestic demand and any re-export commitments as well as provide enough pipeline capacity to transport Caspian and Middle Eastern gas across Turkey to Europe.

    The country's inherent geography -- its classic position as a crossroads between East and West, between North and South -- makes it natural choice to become a giant center for trading in oil, gas and petrochemicals. But its attitude -- the accumulation of its foreign policy, its approach to energy transit and to internal energy development, and its own uncertainty as to its place in the world in general and its involvement in Europe in particular -- tells quite a different story.

  4. Jan 24 (LNGJ) - InterOil, the New York-listed developer of the Gulf LNG project in Papua New Guinea told last year by the government to bring in an experienced LNG player, said the final binding bid solicitation period for the partnering process would close on February 28, 2013. The InterOil board then plans to meet in the first week of March 2013 for the purpose of evaluating bids received and selecting the new partner.


    The main Japanese LNG requirements of 2013 are progress in export licensing of the US LNG projects and the completion on time of new liquefaction ventures in Australia and Oceania


    Japan. The government will await new safety standards for nuclear plants before deciding whether to restart idled reactors, Shinzo Abe, Japan’s new prime minister, said Dec. 26.

    Japan’s new nuclear regulator has said it will announce the rules in July, and Abe indicated some reactors may restart over the next three years if they meet the tougher safety standards.

    Japan May Save 30% on Power by Restarting Reactors, IEEJ Says

    Phasing out oil-indexed long-term LNG prices would better reflect supply and demand in the LNG market, which isn’t tied to crude, and help lower Japan’s energy bills, the IEEJ reiterated.

    Long-term LNG contracts are typically linked to Brent crude or Japan Customs Cleared crude prices. Two western Japanese utilities, Chubu Electric (9502) and Kansai Electric (9503), signed long-term contracts incorporating gas links as part of the price formula with BP Plc (BP/) last year.

    To reduce the “Asia premium” for LNG prices, the IEEJ said Asia’s LNG buyers should jointly purchase the fuel while investing in LNG and natural gas production assets.

    The price of LNG spot cargoes delivered in four to eight weeks rose to $17.95 in northeast Asia, the World Gas Intelligence, an energy research company, said Jan. 14. Gas for February delivery traded as low as $3.566 per million British thermal units in electronic trading today on the New York Mercantile Exchange.


    Lawmakers sent a bipartisan letter to members of the Obama Administration on Wednesday asking the Department of Energy to approve expedite export permits for natural gas consumers in non-Free Trade Agreement countries.

    Two area lawmakers, Bill Johnson, R-Marietta, and Tim Ryan, D-Niles, were two of 109 lawmakers who signed to letter sent to Secretary of Energy Steven Chu.

    The letter says the lawmakers believe studies conducted by the National Economic Research Association for the administration shows the exploration, development and export of natural gas to other countries has economic benefits across the board.


    America’s Natural Gas Alliance strongly supports the country’s ability to export natural gas. As is the case with any product or commodity, when free trade is allowed to flourish, economy enjoys greater prosperity, people greater economic benefits, and workers more and better jobs. Imposing arbitrary limits on free trade, including exports of liquefied natural gas (LNG), would be an economically short-sighted mistake, ANGA said in a statement.


  5. The East Timor Action Network (ETAN)

    AND :

    East Timor and Indonesia Action Network
    This blog supplements ETAN's website ( and listservs. It includes news and comment on justice, human rights, democracy, security, foreign affairs, U.S policy, the environment, and other issues related to the two countries. ETAN supports justice, accountability, human rights and democracy and is non-partisan.




    "...Many commentators appear not to understand that Article 12 of CMATS -- negotiated and signed by Australia and Timor-Leste in 2006 -- outlines a process for either country to withdraw from most of the treaty if a Sunrise development plan has not been agreed by February 2013. Although Australia would prefer that Timor-Leste not implement this provision, it would be less offensive than Australia's secret, unilateral withdrawal from international treaty mechanisms for resolving maritime boundary disputes in March 2002, two months before Timor-Leste became a sovereign state. On 22 October, the Australian Financial Review reported Mr. Prosper's intention to "light a fire" to resolve the Sunrise debate, suggesting that "moving monies around the table" could satisfy all parties' concerns as "anything is commercially viable."


    La'o Hamutuk has published Cowboys, Ogres and Donors: A Decade of Corporate Social Responsibility in Practice by Mandy White, who represented Woodside in Timor-Leste in 2007-2008. The paper sharply criticizes Woodside's "ogres at the helm" and "sycophantic senior staff" taking a Public Relations approach, "not making even tokenistic efforts" to develop Timor-Leste. Whyte characterizes the company's "blundering arrogance:" "Woodside steadfastly refused to regard the Timor-Leste Government as a partner in the development of the Sunrise fields, seemingly characterising them not only as a 'thorn in the side,' but also as devious and untrustworthy. ... [D]riving forward to a final investment decision without the Timor-Leste Government demonstrates an arrogant lack of regard for the relationship."

    After a resulting Radio Australia interview with Mandy Whyte, Woodside sent a statement to Radio Australia:

    "Woodside and its Sunrise Joint Venture participants are committed to progressing the Sunrise LNG Development in a way that provides sustainable long-term benefits to Timor-Leste in the form of opportunities for local participation, employment, training and community development. The Joint Venture continues to work closely with several organisations to deliver a range of social investment projects to deliver sustainable benefits to the health and education of the Timorese. These projects include World Vision's Water for Life program and the Alola Foundation's Maternity Packs and Safe Motherhood program."




    Sunrise and Troubador petroleum and gas fields in the Timor Sea, together known as the Greater Sunrise field







    Petition Background (Preamble):

    The East Timor and Indonesia Action Network (ETAN) is opposed to U.S. training of Indonesia's notorious Special Forces (Kopassus). More than any other unit in the Indonesian military, Kopassus stands accused of the most egregious human rights violations.Journalist Allan Nairn has recently exposed Kopassus involvement in political murders in Aceh in 2009. Tell the Obama administration not to train Kopassus.

    The history of Kopassus human rights violations, its criminality and its unaccountability before Indonesian courts extends back decades and includes human rights and other crimes in East Timor, Aceh, West Papua and elsewhere. The crimes of Kopassus are not only in the past. A Human Rights Watch report published last spring details ongoing Kopassus human right violations in West Papua.

    In 2008, the Bush administration proposed to restart U.S. training of Kopassus. the State Department legal counsel reportedly ruled that the ban on training of military units with a history of involvement in human rights violations, known as the Leahy law, applies to Kopassus as a whole. This ruling should stand.

    See the letter organized by ETAN and signed by more than 50 U.S. organizations - including School of Americas Watch, Pax Christi, Peace Action - opposing training for Kopassus

    For updates see ETAN's website -


    We the undersigned urge the U.S. government to strictly prohibit any U.S. cooperation with or assistance to the Indonesian Special Forces (Kopassus).

    This force, more than any other in the Indonesian military, stands accused by the Indonesian people of some of the most egregious human rights violations. U.S. law prohibits the training of military units with a history of involvement in human rights violations.

    This provision has been long been interpreted as narrowly as possible. However, in 2008, the State Department ruled that the ban, known as the Leahy law, applies to Kopassus as a whole. We believe that this ruling should apply and the U.S. must continue to refuse to train Kopassus.

  7. Something for Woodside to chew on,and their SAS Lockfart and Hostiles to drool over.More guns the answer.

    Norway To Review Security at Domestic Oil, Gas Facilities

    OSLO - Norway should review security at its domestic oil and gas facilities and other critical infrastructure after a terrorist attack against an Algerian gas plant operated by Statoil ASA and BP PLC, the country's minister of petroleum and energy said Wednesday.

    .....the deaths of at least 37 foreign workers was of a scale and ferocity not previously seen on oil facilities in that region, has forced a broad reappraisal of energy industry security in other countries.

    Currently, only fences and sometimes unarmed guards are there to prevent terrorist attacks that could potentially halt the flow of Norwegian gas to the U.K. and European markets.

    Security at Norwegian oil and gas facilities is a responsibility shared between the companies operating them, police and the government

    The offshore union SAFE has criticized the government for the slow response time of the country's special forces


    They forgot to mention the VERY LOW PAY and the temptation to get a job on a mine.


    New online aptitude test to help energy industry employers

    "ESQ Workforce Development Consultant Jody McAully said the Test would help to reduce the number of non-completion apprentice rates.

    “Around one in three electrical apprentices fail to become tradespersons and this high non-completion rate is costing employers thousands in recruitment expenses and poor productivity,”

  8. Australia Day - Invasion Day

    Means different things to different people.

    Barry "Haulpak" Hasse :

    "Just over a year ago, on January 27 2012, across the nation the Australian newspaper headlines screamed “Australia Day shame”, “There goes Australia Day”. Even Wikipedia has a page dedicated to and headed “Australia Day 2012 protests”

    The media headlines of 12 months ago were referring to the outrageous attack on the Australian Prime Minister and Opposition Leader. The attack began when aboriginal protesters tried to disrupt an award ceremony honouring emergency workers on Australia Day.

    Twelve months on and I wonder what we have learnt from the events of that day."

    "...Perhaps older Australians see Australia Day as a day to reflect on what once was and what now is.

    ...Their children may see Australia Day as a day off work

    ...The generation below seem to have a parochial recognition of Australia Day. It is as though a culture has emerged determined to stamp Australia as belonging only to them..."
    (he then goes on a rambling rampage,about meat)
    "Australia is still the land of opportunity and for one increasingly well known Australian, Sam Kekovich; Australia Day is the perfect opportunity to promote all things lamb. The promotion is great for our lamb producers of Australia, many of whom are in Durack, but it also gives rise to the “nutter institutions” of Australia who are still waiting for the day an animal commits suicide in order for us to eat it or better still that we become vegetarians.

    Australia is a great place to live. It is also a great place to eat lamb and for that matter, beef or anything you like and enjoy."


    Yes Barry,and talking of Nutters,here's Katter's Australian Party.

    'Nutty' defence offered for Katter candidates' Muslim musings

    Sydney KAP candidate Jamie Cavanough and former KAP Senate nominee Bernard Gaynor said on social media sites they refuse to buy halal meat because the proceeds benefit Muslims.

    “I would prefer to always buy non-halal as proceeds of halal goes to the Muslim community,” Mr Cavanough wrote on Facebook.

    Mr Gaynor posted on Twitter: “I agree with KAP candidate Jamie Cavanough.

    “I don't want to buy meat that has been faced towards Mecca & blessed.”

    But KAP national director Aidan McLindon used a nut-themed analogy to defend Messrs Gaynor and Cavanough.

    “Some Australians want crunchy peanut butter, others want smooth peanut butter,” Mr McLindon said in a statement.

    “Some Australians want halal meat and some want non halal meat - these are just some of the great freedoms we enjoy in this country.”

    Disendorsed Senate nominee Bernard Gaynor plans to fight suspension from Bob Katter's Australian Party and insists its leadership shares his controversial views about gay teachers

    Mr Gaynor was suspended by KAP on Thursday after saying he wouldn't let gay teachers educate his children.

    A third KAP candidate, Tess Corbett, has withdrawn her candidacy after telling Victoria's Hamilton Spectator newspaper that she didn't believe gay people should have the same rights as heterosexuals.

    On Network Ten's The Project last night, Mr Katter said “I don't know and I don't care” when asked about the future of Mr Gaynor, who was vying for a spot on KAP's Queensland Senate ticket for this year's federal election.

    Mr Katter clashed with interviewers when he played down the issue of suicide by gay and lesbian Australians.


    (who are these people,and why are we paying them?)

  9. cont...Australia Day - Invasion Day

    Means different things to different people.

    Peter Robinson :

    Wilderness Society coordinator Peter Robertson reflects on the Premier abandoning his cherished Kimberley canal project.

    “It’s taken Barnett years to admit he got the Kimberley water canal wrong; how much longer do we have to wait for him to concede the gas hub is ill-conceived?” Mr Robertson said.

    Peter Robertson, WA State Coordinator for the Wilderness Society, said, “It’s taken Barnett years to admit he got the Kimberley water canal wrong; how much longer do we have to wait for him to concede the gas hub is ill-conceived?

    “The unnecessary, uneconomic and divisive gas hub is on life support at the moment.

    “Even the Premier is now saying that he will accept the gas companies delaying any development for years if need be – in recognition of the massive cost blow out of the project.

    “How many times does Mr Barnett have to go through this ridiculous process of adopting big dreams, holding fast to them in the face of all evidence to the contrary, and then belatedly saying he got it wrong?

    “This immature pattern has to end.”


    Noongars :

    About 60 people have gathered on Heirisson Island this morning for cultural talks and ceremony.

    Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander flags festooned the island, along with signs proclaiming it as the Noongar Tent Embassy.

    Noongar Tent Embassy member Helen Corbett said the group wanted to come to Matagarup, the traditional name for the island, to “celebrate their rights as sovereign people” and “educate people about the recognition of our sovereignty.”

    “We’ve never surrendered our freedom and our tribal sovereignty to any government in the world, including Australia,” Ms Corbett said.

    “We chose this day to define ourselves in our own way and not to the standards of the January 26th, the anniversary of white colonisation in this country.”

    “The 25th was the last taste of freedom. That’s the theme of today’s gathering. The last taste of freedom before Europeans came and planted a stick in the ground with a piece of cloth and claimed it for a white king in a foreign country.”

    Ms Corbett said the group was also calling for the causeway to be renamed to commemorate prominent Aboriginal elder Fanny Balbuk Yooreel who was born on the island in 1840.

    Fanny Balbuk’s grandmother, Moojorngul, was said to be buried in the grounds of government house, and she was a traditional custodian of the area.

    Heirisson Island is particularly sacred to Indigenous women because of its role as a former birthing place, Ms Corbett said.

    This morning’s peaceful scenes of preparations for dance and cultural performances were in stark contrast to the violent clashes between police and protestors on the site last March when demonstrators ignored an order from the City of Perth to vacate the island.

    Organiser Marianne Headland Mackay said the group had met with police and council representatives to notify them of their planned activities, but said the group were not seeking permission.

    She welcomed the council’s response saying they had worked with the embassy group.

    The council reopened the access way onto the island and provided extra bins, she said.

    “They have been really good,” she said.

    She said she didn’t think there were plans for the members of the group to camp on the island.

    “The spirits and elders tell us it’s not the right time. The whole island needs to be smoked and cleared of negative energy,” she said.

    Police would make their regular patrols and assist if there was any trouble from people outside the community, Ms Corbett said.

    City of Perth spokesman Peter Jackson confirmed organisers met with new City of Perth CEO Gary Stevenson and notified him of what they had intended to do.

    “There’s nothing stopping anyone going to Heirisson Island,” Mr Jackson said.
    “The issue in the past was they camped there.”

  10. This article is very helpful and informative. Thank you for sharing!