A dedicated group of local community members are standing up for what is right and preventing multi-national companies from undertaking drilling and establishing a ‘beach head’ on the culturally significant, scenic and environmentally sensitive Kimberly coast. This group of normal community members are doing extraordinary things. These everyday heroes are working in moral support of the Indigenous ‘law keeper’ for the threatened area and the large and ever growing environmental and social movement to save the Kimberley that is being fostered by many individuals and organizations around Australia and the world.
‘Big Oil’ and their contractors are used to having it all their own way – but public scrutiny is stopping them from damaging country as we speak. As mobile drill rigs move, the people mobilize to watch them and the trucks and machinery are stood down in an attempt to avoid controversy.
The problem is that the proposed development does not have State or Federal environmental approval, Indigenous approval has not been granted, the clearing permits are the subject of court challenges and even some of the companies involved such as BHP and Shell have expressed concerns and are yet to make a final investment decision. Peaceful vigilance and non-violent action are preventing some of the on ground damage as we wait for the annual rains and cyclones for a brief reprieve.
International and government backed bullies
Woodside, acting of behalf of joint venture partners Shell, B.P, Chevron and BHP are attempting to preemptively, immorally and possibly illegally push into and damage high value bush land and beautiful marine environment, all in an attempt to force a polluted industrial future on the Kimberley.
Woodside is also in partnership with the Colin Barnett lead West Australian state Government which is in a clear conflict of interest position as both the proponent and the main environmental/social regulator of they plan to build the largest LNG processing factory in the world. The proposed fossil fueled, polluting, climate changing mega-factory would inevitably spawn associated chemical industries and would be the ‘thin edge of the wedge’ for the broader destruction of one of the world’s last great wild places.
Compulsory Acquisition, or theft of Country?
In the face of opposition from Indigenous traditional Custodians and Native Title claimants lead by senior traditional law boss Joseph Roe the state government has moved take the land by compulsory acquisition using laws set up to provide for the public good, not the profit of multi-national corporations – a move that has disgusted and disappointed Indigenous leaders and human rights organisations.
A special place
The Kimberley is the home of the Group IV population of humpback whales which nurse and migrate in the vicinity of the huge proposed port. This is a land and sea environment of international significance with unquestionable world heritage values – a unique place acknowledged as one of the least human impacted places left in the world.
Coral reef, sea grass and sponge gardens could be blasted and dredged away to accommodate some of the largest boats in the world. The recent gulf of Mexico oil rig disaster and the similar catastrophic failure of the Montara rig uncomfortably close to the Kimberley in the Timor Sea clearly show us this is amongst the most dangerous industries on the planet.
Too important to put at risk
The Kimberley coast is the wrong place for this kind of industry. There are alternatives.
Save The Kimberley takes it’s hat of to the brave community members who are making a stand for all of us in the world who care about our future, our cultures and our environment.
- The lawyers from Environmental Defenders Office have released an update regarding Joe Roe’s challenge to vegetation clearing on James Price Point. 1st Dec 2010
Preemptive Offshore drilling marked by protest and industry mistakes and accidents
- Community Kayak protest at James Price point
- The West Newspaper Nov 26 2010 “Greens Senator Scott Ludlum has accused Woodside of keeping secret an incident at James Price Point where one of two jack-up barges collecting core samples in a geological survey tipped and lost drilling materials in the ocean.”
Broome and Perth communities Rally to save the Kimberley
Social stress and dirty tricks
- Oil companies try to buy their way into Broome while the Barnett government attempts to ‘bulldoze’ in. Commentary on Hands of Country blog – Lurujarri Under Invasion by Hostile Environmental Services