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INDIGENOUS VIEWS ON MINING AND WORLD HERITAGE ON CAPE YORK PENINSULA FNQ

12 Jul

There’s a diversity of views among indigenous communities in Cape York Peninsula on the Australian Government’s recent push for World Heritage listing, and on the prospect of new or expanded mining in the region.

The Federal Government has run a long consultation process to muster indigenous support for a World Heritage listing – but the prospect of an election in the next few months has probably stalled the process, at least for now.

At the same time, both the Federal and Queensland Governments have given the nod to new or expanded mining activity in the region. The long-established bauxite mining around Weipa, on the western Cape, will expand, and several companies are bidding for the right to extract bauxite around the indigenous community of Aurukun, south of Weipa.

And the Queensland Government has called for tenders to prospect for petroleum and gas in what it calls “greenfield areas” – including on native title land at Pascoe River http://statements.qld.gov.au/Statement/2013/5/28/new-land-release-a-boost-to-exploration-opportunities

And earlier this year, a company linked to Gina Rinehart applied for exploration permits near Laura, in country rich with ancient indigenous rock art. The company withdrew its application a few days later, saying it had not known about the rock art.

At Aurukun, Mayor Derek Walpo welcomes mining as the key to a prosperous future for his community – elsewhere on the Cape, communities are saying no to mining.

LISTEN Click on the red arrow to hear indigenous leaders talk about mining and world heritage on Cape York Peninsula

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We heard Derek Walpo – the mayor of Aurukun Shire Council: David Claudie – chairman Chuulangun Aboriginal Corporation, and Thomas George, a traditional owner from Laura

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2 responses to “INDIGENOUS VIEWS ON MINING AND WORLD HERITAGE ON CAPE YORK PENINSULA FNQ

  1. Mick

    July 15, 2013 at 7:18 PM

    Cape York TOs should travel to Borroloola in the Northern Territory and speak to countrymen there about the evils of the mining industry and specifically the rape of the McArthur River by Xstrata and how the Federal Environment Minister at the time Peter Garrett turned a blind eye to it all. Mining does not and will not help Indigenous Cape communities, Rio has been ripping the guts out of Weipa for decades and what economic benefits have the nearby communities of Napranum, Aurukun and Mapoon seen from this? Diddly squat, that’s what!

     
  2. roger martin (@sixoh60)

    July 12, 2013 at 10:50 PM

    Richard you need to ask Noel Pearson what he and Tony Abbott discuss when Abbott is on his annual visit to Arakun Noel seems to be one of the leading figures along with Abbot to rejig the Wild Rivers legislation.

     
 
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