Browse LNG Precinct Agreement
In 2008 the State Government, Woodside and the Kimberley Land Council (KLC) representing the GJJ Native Title Claim Group, started negotiations to establish the Browse LNG Precinct at James Price Point.
A 26 member TONC representing each the 10 family groups was established to help steer the negotiations on behalf of the GJJ Native Title Claim Group.
In April 2009 all parties signed off on an in-principle Heads of Agreement (HoA). The purpose of the HoA was to make sure there was a clear framework to move negotiations along and establish key principles for a final Agreement between the State, GJJ people and Woodside.
On 30 June 2011 the GJJ Native Title Claim Group gave consent for compulsory acquisition of the land at James Price Point to be used for the Browse LNG precinct.
The Agreement was signed on 30 June 2011 and sets out the economic and other benefits for the GJJ Native Title Claim Group who would be affected by a LNG precinct at James Price Point. Included in the Agreement are benefits linked to education, training, housing, health, and land management.
A separate Regional Benefits Agreement (RBA) was negotiated for the benefit of Kimberley Aboriginal people. Aarnja Limited was established to manage the RBA. Aarnja is totally independent from Waardi.
The final Agreement has three parts;
BROWSE LNG PRECINCT PROJECT AGREEMENT (Agreement)
The Agreement provides all the native title consents needed to set up and operate an LNG precinct at James Price Point. It also sets out benefits to flow to the GJJ people by the State and Woodside as the foundation proponents of the project and any other proponent/s who may come on board with the project after 30 June 2011. These benefits were provided to Waardi and Guumbarr to manage.
In September 2013, Woodside provided six month notice of it’s intention to withdraw from the Agreement. Woodside has now formally withdrawn from the Agreement and no further benefits are due from Woodside.
BROWSE LNG PRECINCT REGIONAL BENEFITS AGREEMENT (RBA)
The RBA meets a commitment to make sure benefits are provided to Indigenous people of the Dampier Peninsula and broader Kimberley region as well as the GJJ Native Title Claim Group. It is a way of making sure benefits are shared across the Kimberley region through Aarnja.
BROWSE (LAND) AGREEMENT
This agreement meets a commitment to make sure the land at the James Price Point precinct is used only for LNG processing. It ensures that land is rehabilitated and returns to Traditional Owners after work finishes at the LNG precinct. It also ensures LNG development in the Kimberley is contained to the James Price Point precinct as a way to protect the Kimberley coast.
The final Agreement has been passed as a State law by Parliament.
The following Factsheets were prepared in April 2013, just prior to Woodside’s withdrawal from the Agreement. They provide an interesting indication of the project and the potential benefits had the project gone ahead.
State Government Agreements (including the Agreement, RBA and Browse (Land) Agreement) can be found on the Department of State Development’s website at: http://www.dsd.wa.gov.au/8581.aspx