Media: Premier Operating Behind a Veil of Secrecy

Greens Member for the Mining and Pastoral Region Robin Chapple MLC has accused the Premier of operating behind a veil of secrecy when it comes to ongoing development plans of the Browse Basin.

“In response to a series of questions in Parliament regarding the Government’s plans for the extraction and processing of Browse Basin gas and petroleum, the Premier has refused to tell the people of Western Australia which companies are currently considering the development of a processing facility at James Price Point,” Mr Chapple said.

“While some companies have clearly indicated that they would be using floating technology, the Premier insists that some are seriously considering establishing an LNG precinct and associated industries, such as fertilizer and explosives factories, at James Price Point, but he won’t say who they are,” Mr Chapple said.

Another Parliamentary question, citing the Supreme Court’s decision of 19 August 2013 that declared the environmental approval of the Browse LNG precinct invalid and asking if it was now time for the government to abandon its plans to develop James Price Point, drew a refusal to do so.

“Indeed, the Minister for the Environment was at pains to point out that ‘the State intends to continue with the necessary approvals to provide for future opportunities for LNG development’.

“With comments such as these, one could be forgiven for wondering who is looking after the environment,” Mr Chapple said.

“Secrecy also surrounds planning documents such as the Dampier Peninsula Planning Strategy. More than a year after its development, this document still hasn’t been released for public comment even though it has been endorsed by the Statutory Planning Committee. Yet it forms the basis of the Local Planning Scheme currently under preparation by the Shire of Broome.

“Members of the community are crying out to be part of this process, a cry that is being ignored by a Premier who thinks he knows best,” Mr Chapple said.

For more information please contact Robin Chapple on 0409 379 263 or 9486 8255



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