Monday, May 30, 2011

Goodbye to Broome time - Opinion - Editorial - General - The Canberra Times

Goodbye to Broome time - Opinion - Editorial - General - The Canberra Times

The challenges for those on the ground in Broome are significant. They are a long way from the seats of power. And the critical dilemmas facing a small community threatened with massive, rapid industrialisation are weighing heavily on people's minds.

Some locals had believed the deal was all finalised and there was nothing they could do. But increasingly people are re-engaging, finding that there is still a fight to be had and it is one they have the energy to mount.

John Butler | musicians protest Kimberley gas hub

John Butler | musicians protest Kimberley gas hub

It is all part of an Australia-wide campaign to stop the gas hub from going ahead, with Jimmy Barnes joining Rob Hirst and Dom Turner from Backsliders performing in Sydney, while Shane Howard, Bart Willoughby, Tonchi McIntosh and Andy Reid will be staging their protest outside BHP in Melbourne this afternoon.

Meanwhile, back in Broome the Pigram Brothers and numerous other local artists and musicians staged their own "rebel Busk" protest outside Woodside's Offices in Broome

Save The Kimberley

Barnes, alongside the Backsliders, entertained a lunch-time crowd on Sydney's Market Street as part of a national ''rebel busk'' day.

Barnes said the campaign was to raise awareness about an alternative to what he said would be destruction of Broome and the Kimberley coastline in WA.

Video: Butler guerilla protest

Read more:

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Barnett's Derby gas plan in doubt PETER KLINGER, The West Australian

Kimberley coast shapes up as crucial battleground

IT'S winter but it's hotting up again at James Price Point, an isolated spot on the Kimberley coast north of Broome, described by West Australian Premier Colin Barnett as an ''unremarkable beach''. It is now the subject of increasingly vigorous protests against a $30 billion gas hub proposed by Woodside and its partners in the Browse Basin - Shell, Chevron, BP and BHP.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Woodside's Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap James Prices Point

Country now has 2 buggies being driven all over the sand dunes, heritage sites and ancient middens with the cutting of additional tracks, daily through the fragile Holocene sand dune system and Vine Thickets pockets.

The impacts that Country, it’s habitants and it’s heritage has been subjected to since the
 Geotechnical drilling on Manari Road: Onshore Vegetation Monitoring Program
 Eureka Archaeological Research
 Seismic testing throughout the area
 Browse Alternative Pipeline Shore Approach Survey
 Flora and Fauna Survey of Proposed Light Industrial Area, Workers Accommodation and Pipeline Corridor
 James Price Point Frugivorous Fauna baseline Study
 Initial ground water Monitoring and sites 6x, BVorex and Borex1
 Monsoon Vine Thicket Boundary Mapping
 Meteorological Tower Service Visit
 Onshore Geophysical Survey (including beach intertidal)
 Benthic Habitat Infill Survey
 Metocean Instrument Service Visit
has been considerable, destructive and heartrending . Hundreds of additional movement of vehicles on a daily basis is being recorded. Hordes of people are entering Country, total strangers to our heartland.

Woodside is ensuring that they are only employing people who are ignorant of the significance of country;’s people, it’s history, it’s national and international heritage values, it’s importance to Broome residents recreational and camping activities and …….. our community’s aspirations for our future.

These people are being paid to be muted, they are herded like cattle to and from Broome and to their place of work in order for their contact with local people to be tightly controlled. Woodside does not want any workers to have any contact with the locals because they don’t want these people to be told the true story …. that no-one wants this dangerous polluting industry in our recreational, camping and heritage grounds. That our community does not want to have to deal with the entire debilitating social /economic impacts that will befall us.

Our connection to our country, to our heartland ......... is just that…….. Connection.

Locals opposed to the proposed LNG at James Price Point, have been totally checked out by our local police force, but we are the locals, they know everything about all of us already. However, the strangers in our community, the ones hiding behind company logos and uniforms, who are here to make the quick buck, who are from who knows where, are not and have not been given the same level of scrutiny. Why?

Country is fighting back with the buggies being caught in the sand dunes, survey cords and equipment being taken or swamped by the tides, pindan clogging up their drilling equipment, Hagstrom drilling unable to provide good solid quality core samples from Manari Road, drill pits walls unable to be stabilised and the south easterly wind playing havoc with their seismic readings. And of course the heat, the flies and the mosquitoes are driving most of them insane.

But Country and all of its inhabitants is already under enormous stress as it is being subjected to:
 Major disturbance to native vegetation and fauna because of illegal cutting of access tracks, and vehicle movement; through the sand dune and Vine Thickets pockets.
 Excavation of Heritage sites and the removal activities of artifacts
 Significant ground disturbance - due to the establishment of access tracks, boreholes, test pits, geotechnical tests and sampling, lay- down and other specified areas, and vehicle movement;
 Major disturbance to terrestrial fauna - due to clearing, vehicle interactions and noise;
 Major boating noise disturbance to ocean with increase Multi Beam Echo Sounder working the coastline in order to determine the optimal pipe route across the shallow water approaching James Price Point and to provide key inputs into further marine and port studies.;
 Massive increase in light, noise, air emissions and choking dust from vehicle and equipment exhausts;
 Major introduction/transfer of weeds and other pests;
 Significant pollution/contamination from routine discharges;
 Major pollution/contamination from unplanned discharges;
 Considerable disturbance to recreational activities; and
 Momentous and criminal disturbance to national and international heritage and conservation values.
 Invasive photographic footage being taken of tourists, locals and children by people who refuse to identify themselves or who they represent. If questioned by anyone these unidentified personnel respond with a belligerent attitude and aggressive behaviour

What is important to understand is the following facts about the work that is planned in the James Price Point over the coming days:

 Geotechnical drilling on the beach south of James Price Point; and

 Geotechnical drilling in the area of the proposed LNG precinct

 It is proposed that new tracks will be cleared to a width of 5m to provide access to the FEED and FEED Infill geotechnical test sites. An extra 0.5m will be allowed to store top soil. Tracks from Manari Rd to the beach will be of a greater width
(up to 8 m).

 Proposed clearing would be undertaken by a combination of raking and grading. Additional tracks are planned to be cleared over the southern portion of the common user/laydown area of the LNG Precinct to provide access for cultural heritage surveys and also to some additional FEED.

 Up to approximately 350 geotechnical test sites of approximately 200 m2 each are proposed to be cleared.

 The proposed alignment of the tracks to access the geotechnical test sites located within the dune and vine thickets are subject to change from what has been indicated.

 An area of up to 100 m by 75 m would also need to be cleared for use as a temporary laydown area to store materials

 A total of approximately 20,000 L of water per day is estimated to be required for compaction of roads and test sites and dust suppression during site preparation and operations.

 Groundwater monitoring bores would be installed at up to 50 of the geotechnical test sites. These bores will be installed by pushing or drilling a rod (approximately 5 cm diameter) into the soil up to a depth of approximately 25 m.

 Test pits would be dug to a depth of up to 5 m at up to 100 of the geotechnical test sites using a backhoe (or similar). These pits will be up to 10m x 10m in area.

And all of this destruction is taking place when there are still NO APPROVALS for this proposed project. Everyone must understand that a majority of the planned destruction of Country will have already been completed long before any approvals have come through.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Main Roads WA have cleared 19km of bushland to James Price Point


Main Roads WA have cleared 19km of bushland to James Price Point, site of proposed Woodside,Shell, BP, BHP and Chevron gas refineries for the Browse Basin project.

The proposed road has been referred to the Federal Government for environmental assessment (see link below) but no decision has been announced by Environment Minister Tony Burke.

Environs Kimberley Director Martin Pritchard said:

"It looks like Main Roads have barrelled through prime Bilby habitat without getting approval from Federal Environment Minister Tony Burke."

"The taxpayer is effectively paying for a road through endangered species habitat to a project that hasn't been approved yet. This is a clear abuse of process, not waiting for an environmental assessment, as well as an abuse of taxpayer dollars." Mr Pritchard said.

"What's the point of asking the Federal Minister for the Environment for approval to clear land on the Kimberley coast if you're just going to go ahead and do it anyway?"

"We're calling on the Federal Minister for the Environment Tony Burke to step in and use his powers to make sure threatened species and other matters of national environmental significance are protected. Main Roads WA should be fined if they have breached the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act (EPBC Act 1999) such as happened in other cases recently." (see below for link to fines for unauthorised clearing)

Media Contact
Martin Pritchard 0427 548 075

Link to referral by Main Roads WA proposed road to James Price Point:

Title of Referral: Main Roads Western Australia/Transport - land/James Price Point, 60km north of Broome/WA/Construction of a 43km long sealed access road to the Browse LNG precinct
Date Received: 21 Feb 2011 Reference Number: 2011/5852

Links to cases of unauthorised clearing:

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Total desecration of Heritage Sites James Price Point

Nearly two years ago Redhand put up a video about the ancient Middens that could be found between James Price Point and Quondong. Yesterday, Redhand return to these sites, only to find total desecration of these national heritage and international important sites.

Eureka Archaeological Research and Consulting (Eureka) have received from the Department of Indigenous Affairs authorising them to undertake excavation and collection activities for the purposes of archaeological investigation.


This unsighted Permit allows Eureka to:

Record and collect selected stone and shell artefacts identified on archaeological sites within the proposed James Price Point development area;

Test pit stratified archaeological deposits identified within DIA 13076 (Walmadan) and collect samples of marine shell and/or charcoal for radiocarbon dating;

Undertake shovel test pits in areas of dense vegetation in order to define the eastern (inland) boundary of DIA 13076 (Walmadan); and

Undertake (if required) similar assessment and test pitting at other sites in the Project area.


The application for the Section 16 Permit was authorised by the
Environmental, Cultural and Heritage Team (ECHT) on the basis that it would enable selected artefacts to be collected from the proposed LNG precinct development area for the purposes of research.

It also will allow Eureka to define the geographic extent of the Walmadan Site (DIA 13076) through test pitting (ie digging underground to see whether there was additional archaeological material that had been buried).

The fact is that no one has sighted or can get a copy of the Section 16 permit or the Heritage Protection Agreement signed by KLC, Woodside and the State raises very serious questions.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Woodside's world's best practice in action James Price Point

According to the Work Program Clearance Notice under the Heritage Protection Agreement for the Browse LNG Precinct: Front End Engineering Design (FEED) Surveys
WEL Ref: #5719624 Date: July 2010, Status: Final Work Program Clearance Notice Under the Heritage Protection Agreement for the LNG Precinct: Browse LNG Development, FEED Surveys
4.4.2 Hydrogeoiogical Investigation Program
Should the data from the first bore indicate that the water is of suitable quality and quantity, up to two additional bore holes will be drilled on the same drill pad, and up to six monitoring bores will be drilled, three on each of the outer drill pads, to a maximum depth of approximately 1600 m.

This will result in three bores that allow pump testing and monitoring of the Broome Sandstone Aquifer, three bores that allow pump testing and monitoring of the deeper Wallal Aquifer, and three pores that allow monitoring of the deepest Grant Group Aquifer.

Drilling fluids will be recycled during drilling operations (where possible) and drill fluid that cannot be re-used will be recovered and disposed of appropriately offsite. Drill "Cuttings will also be disposed of appropriately off-site.

Approximately 15,000 - 20,000 L of water is estimated to be required per day during the drilling operations. This water will be supplied with water from the Broome Sandstone Aquifer extracted from the geotechnical survey extraction bores or the hydrogeological bores from this hydrogeological investigation (total water volume for all uses is estimated to be 5,000-10,000 kL, equivalent to the water stored in approximately 2 - 4 olympic size swimming pools).

Supplementary water will be accessed from the Water Corporation's Broome Standpipe and trucked to site"

The entire poisonous residue including all drilling chemicals from the last eight (8) days of drilling on the Manari Road, near James Price Point was shoveled, raked, scrapped, poured and channeled directly back into drill hole. The first drill hole has been completed, and this morning the drill rig was moved onto the next drilling location, to the north.
Activists have taken soil samples for testing.

The Monsoonal Vine Thickets(remnant rainforest) that you can see in the foreground of this footage is totally reliant on these precious Aquifers. Already these ecology threaten communities and our water is being poisoned and compromised.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Woodside ripping up fragile sand dune systems

According to the Woodside’s Browse LNG Development On shore Geophysical Survey, activity Update May 2011 “ The survey will occur along the Manari Road, the beach and between James Price Point and Quondong Point and existing access tracks by foot in the coastal area”.

As you can clearly see in this footage, these people think they are a law onto themselves, they are driving over fragile rehabilitated sand dune systems, over plants, over ancient middens, over grave sites.

Thursday, May 12, 2011

UPDATE 2-Australia's Woodside taps ExxonMobil executive for CEO | Reuters

UPDATE 2-Australia's Woodside taps ExxonMobil executive for CEO | Reuters

Placing National Heritage Into Plastic Buckets at James Price Point

Not only are they drilling bores into the Manari Road for the next thirty days, there are surveyors everywhere, deep into the remnant rainforest and others driving into our coast care rehabilitated sand dunes and cutting their own tracks directly to the coast.

The TONC mob (KLC employed, with Top Up Dollars from Woodside) are working in the fragile dunes systems, in Country and digging up cultural items, shellfish remains, bones of fish, birds, and land and sea mammals once used for food, charcoal from ancient campfires, tools made from stone, shell, and bone and placing our National Heritage into plastic buckets and handing them over to Woodside and the State for safe keeping!!!!!!!!!!!!!.

Protest fuels Darwin gas plan | Business News | NT News | Darwin, Northern Territory, Australia |

Protest fuels Darwin gas plan | Business News | NT News | Darwin, Northern Territory, Australia |

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Woodside invades Quondong near James Price Point today

The State Government has not completed the Strategic Assessment process, the EPA has not reported its findings or made recommendations to the Government and no tick off has been provided by the Commonwealth, despite all this the Shire of Broome has given approval for drilling on Manari Road to James Price Point. Drilling started today on the first of 9 boreholes in the road. Protestors and bogged vehicles delayed the convoy of drilling and other machinery along the road. Diesel fuel leaked onto the road causing a stir amongst the Woodside crew and they carefully wiped it up with paper towel. Woodside's traffic management plan has provided Broome with its first set of traffic lights- on Manari Road for goodness sake.

Hands off country
fighting for country