Here’s the Environs Kimberley WA State Election Scorecard
Announcements made since EK published the scorecard.
Liberal Party policies: Kimberley
- Continue to push for a giant gas hub at James Price Point.
- Create one of Australia’s biggest national parks - Wanjina National Park. (NOTE – Liberal Party policy does not prevent mining in National Parks)
- $15million to create a Great Kimberley Marine Park stretching from Talbot Bay to the Northern Territory border.
- The park will cover more than 30,000 square kilometres of the Kimberley’s State waters. It will be second only to the Great Barrier Reef as Australia’s biggest marine park.
- The Liberal-led Government committed $63million for the Kimberley Science and Conservation Strategy, which will create the State’s largest, interconnected system of marine and terrestrial parks.
- Liberals are negotiating with a range of Traditional Owner groups on joint management of these parks.
ALP policies: Kimberley
- Establish the Great North Kimberley Marine Park, extending from King Sound in the west to Cambridge Gulf in the east, to protect about 9000 kms of coastline.
- Establish a 160 square kilometre national park to protect Horizontal Falls.
- Establish the Fitzroy River National Park from the Geikie Gorge National Park along the Fitzroy River to the north and along the Margaret River to the east. (NOTE – Labor Party policy is for no mining in National Parks however in the past land has been excised from National Parks for mining)
- Commence negotiations with the Mitchell Plateau bauxite tenement holders to relinquish their interest and then legislate to ensure the Mitchell Plateau is protected from mining in perpetuity.
- WA Labor will also allocate $4million over four years to employ 10 indigenous rangers to help manage the new Fitzroy River National Park.
- Not support uranium mining in the Kimberley
- Will not support Coal Seam Gas fracking (NOTE – most onshore gas in the Kimberley is shale gas)
Greens policies: Kimberley
- No gas hub at James Price Point.
- Create Great Kimberley Marine Park.
- Prevent fracking and coal mining in the Canning Basin/Fitzroy River catchment.
- Not support uranium mining in the Kimberley.
- Not allow new dams in the Kimberley.
- Develop sustainable economic futures for the region and redirect ‘Royalties for Regions’ funds away from mining subsidies to communities.
Nationals policies: Kimberley
- No environmental policy announcements made.
To hear from the candidates go to ABC Kimberley’s podcast of the candidate forum http://www.abc.net.au/local/stories/2013/03/07/3710547.htm?site=kimberley
EK Media Release 20 April
100% renewable energy for the price of two coffees per week
The Zero Carbon Australia Project is coming to the Kimberley! There will be a presentation about the Project in Broome on April 30 — an event not to be missed.
Drawing on a wide array of scientific research, the Project sets out a ten-year plan for Australia to be powered by 100% renewable energy at a cost of just $8 per household per week.
Martin Pritchard, Executive Director of Environs Kimberley is enthusiastic, saying,
“This is an exciting event. It will tell us about viable, large-scale alternatives to fossil-fuel dependence, which will allow for economic development based on sustainable sources of energy.”
We’ve extended the closing date for applications for the West Kimberley Nature Project until 4.30pm March 1st. For details see here.
The Sydney Morning Herald
IT WAS once so common it was considered a pest, found running through the rooftops of many houses in Broome.
But in a narrow, rainforest-filled gorge, 350 kilometres from the West Australian pearling capital, ecologist Katherine Tuft has had no luck catching a golden-backed tree rat.
And then, as she inspects the fifth cage she placed out the night before, Dr Tuft finds what she is looking for.
The Sydney Morning Herald
Great extinctions have blighted Australia since European settlement but Nicky Phillips finds a small sanctuary still thriving in the isolated splendour of the Kimberley region.
“No one is allowed to sleep until we find it.” Ecologist Dr James Smith is half joking but the force of his voice suggests he is determined, even a bit desperate.
For the past two weeks he has been scouring the tree canopies and sun-baked rock ledges of a remote region of the north-west Kimberley for the elusive rough-scaled python.
Last week saw a series of articles in the Australian about the gas hub, including an inflammatory editorial titled ‘Kimberley racism points to development tensions’.
Geoff Cousins is one of those who responded, arguing “None of us, and there are many, has ever put the argument that this project should be completely abandoned and benefits that might flow from it taken away, from anyone. All have said that the chosen location is the wrong site and that it is possible to develop this resource in an environmentally sensitive and economically rational way.”
A FISHING ban enforced in Queensland’s Gladstone Harbour appears likely to extend to cover waters within a 100km radius of the city a source has told Fishing World.
It has been reported that a contaminants plume is now visible from the air over Gladstone, the origins of which are believed to be dredging works underway for construction of a liquefied natural gas plant in the harbour.
Since initial reports of widespread dying barramundi and other species which led to fishing closures in the harbour and surrounding waters, (earlier report here) Fisho has been told of incidents of Spanish mackerel and reef fish outside the harbour also being affected by contaminants… For full article »
A report released by econmic think tank The Australia Institute last week, argues that mining does not contribute as much to the economy as many Australians may believe.
“…Australians believe the mining industry employs 16 per cent of the workforce, whereas figures from the Australian Bureau of Statistics show the actual figure is 1.9 per cent.”
“The survey also found that Australians believe mining accounts for 35 per cent of national economic activity, but ABS data showed the industry accounted for only 9.2 per cent of gross domestic product…” Click here for full article in The Australian
National Heritage listing provides formal recognition of the outstanding cultural and natural values of the West Kimberley, however listing alone will not protect the values this two year process has identified.
“This decision must be a call to action for the Australian government – it is not enough to merely recognise values. If the government is serious about our natural and cultural heritage, the Environment Minister must act to these values,” Environs Kimberley Acting Director Emma Belfield said today.
“Though today’s announcement will formally recognise the national significance of the Kimberley, it will not stop large scale industrial development,” Ms Belfield continued. To read press release in full, click here
Related Media coverage:
Heritage Listing too weak: green groups Perth Now
Kimberley Heritage Listing doesn’t please all Nine News online.
Heritage decision won’t halt industry The West Australian
Minister confirms Heritage Listing Sydney Morning Herald
Kimberley still threatened by LNG SBS World News story
Meanwhile, the Broome Community No Gas group had their own message for Minister Burke on the day of the National heritage announcement – see below for the banner unfurled on the pindan cliffs of James Price Point.
The West Australian
Conservation groups are far from pleased with draft sanctuaries for northern Australian waters.
Full article »
Conservationists criticise proposed marine park network
…… Patrick O’Leary says under the plan, 97 per cent of northern waters would still be open to fishing and mining.
“This plan delivers for big oil and big gas, it delivers for the trawlers,” he said.
“It does not deliver for conservation and the minister now has to really get to work to find out why his department has come out with this kind of a plan and to fix it up so that we can have something we can all be satisfied with is a proper and secure conservation plan for the future….” Full article »
See here for Save Our Tropical Sea Life alliance (Environs Kimberley is a member of this alliance)