From the Guardian
The Murujuga Aboriginal Council says it was not substantially consulted about the idea of pursuing a world heritage listing for the Burrup peninsula. Photograph: Graeme Robertson for the Guardian
Traditional owners of Australia’s largest and most significant rock art site have been “left out” of discussions around the management and potential world heritage listing of the site, a Senate inquiry has found.
The final report of the Senate committee, which was ordered in late 2016 to examine potential damage to the site by a nearby industrial estate, was delayed eight times before being released on Wednesday.
Spokespeople from MAC told the committee that both the organisation and its council of elders had not been substantially consulted on the idea of pursuing a world heritage listing of the site for close to a decade, despite the former Western Australian premier Colin Barnett committing in early 2017 to pursuing the listing.
The MAC chair, Raelene Cooper, told the committee last year that traditional owners were “sceptical” about the benefit of world heritage listing because they do not know if it would lessen protections or Aboriginal control over the area.
Cooper also said they had been “left out” of discussions around potential damage to the site from emissions by nearby Yara Pilbara liquid ammonia plant and the proposed Orica-owned technical ammonium nitrate plant.