Archive for November, 2011
The mining boom in Western Australia is proving to be a double-edged sword for tourism, with leisure visitors competing against the fly-in, fly-out workforce for limited accommodation and flights, according to the Tourism Council of WA.
Authorities have indicated for the first time they may clear the gas hub protest camps in the Kimberley over concerns for the protesters’ safety during the coming cyclone season.
The two camps were established on the road to James Price Point, just north of Broome, almost six months ago in protest against plans to build a $30 billion gas plant at the site.
There have been scuffles with police and more than 40 arrests at the camps during a series of road blockades.
WOODSIDE Petroleum, Australia’s second-biggest oil producer, faces delays at its liquefied natural gas projects because of challenges in obtaining funding, customers and regulatory approvals, UBS AG said.
The company may defer an investment decision on its proposed Browse LNG venture ”materially beyond” the third quarter of 2012, UBS analysts Gordon Ramsay and Cameron Hardie wrote in a report.
IF THE markets are heading back to lows last seen during the global financial crisis, Woodside Petroleum is being touted by analysts as stock that could be among the first to reach the floor.
Australias ninth biggest stock by market capitalisation bottomed at $26.58 a share in November 2008 and last traded at $32.94.
A junior exploration company says it will consult with Kimberley residents before starting to look for petroleum in the Canning Basin.
NSW-based Pangaea Resources wants the Western Australian Government to grant it an exploration permit across more than 6,000 square kilometres.
By Matt Brann
The shire of Halls Creek in outback Western Australia hardly looks like a place you’d associate with lasers, iPads, mobile phones and hybrid cars… but take another look.
A growing number of resource companies are exploring the region for rare earths, which are a group of elements used in most of today’s modern technology.
As demand increases for electronic products, so too has the search to find more deposits, and the Halls Creek region is proving to be a hotspot.
The State Government has been accused of muzzling public servants after two workers quit their jobs due to restrictions on speaking out against the proposed Kimberley gas hub.
The plans for a gas plant north of Broome have divided the town and dozens of public servants are among those who have joined protests against it.
However, those employed by the Department of Environment and Conservation have been told to apply in writing before taking part in such activity.
Park Ranger Shaun Clarks says he resigned earlier this year after being told he was not allowed to express his opposition publicly .
By Kathy Marks
Fifty kilometres north of Broome, at the end of a corrugated dirt track, is James Price Point, where red cliffs tumble down to a milk-white beach lapped by turquoise waters.
A popular fishing and camping spot, the Point is also an important Aboriginal site where “songlines” cross. Embedded in rocks are 130 million-year-old dinosaur footprints.
Offshore, humpback whales calve and dolphins, turtles and dugong feed.
If the state Government in Western Australia and the nation’s biggest oil and gas company, Woodside, get their way, a huge gas refinery will be built here.
Woodside Petroleum Ltd. has released for public comment its draft environmental impact statement (EIS) for the proposed $30 billion (Aus.) Browse LNG project in Western Australia.
The project involves development of the Torosa (originally called Scott Reef), Brecknock, and Calliance (originally Brecknock South) gas-condensate fields found between 1971 and 2000 some 425 km north of Broome and 290 km off the Kimberley coast.
Collectively they are estimated to contain 13.3 tcf of recoverable gas and 360 million bbl of recoverable condensate. They lie in 400-700 m of water.
Scientists are questioning the conclusions of the Department’s Strategic Assessment Report for the planned gas processing precinct at James Price Point. But the Department defends the report saying that it is a result of a scientifically rigorous process.
Four scientists from Murdoch University’s Cetacean Research Unit made a public submission on the Department of State Development’s Browse LNG Precinct Strategic Assessment Report on impacts a planned gas processing precinct would have on the marine environment.
In a detailed submission, the scientists conclude “…we have very little confidence in the scientific integrity of the report and this is evidenced by the unfounded conclusions reached within.” Lead author of the submission, Dr Amanda Hodgson, says their main concern is that “…the impact of this development on dolphins has not been adequately addressed at all.”