Future Gas Strategy: Beetaloo Basin Traditional Owners say no to new fracking - “The answer is not gas but solar, which can power our communities from the sun.”

May 09, 2024 8:21 AM

WHAT: Response to the Federal Government’s release today of the “Future Gas Strategy”, from Nurrdalinji Aboriginal Corporation which represents native title holders from the Beetaloo Basin region where Tamboran and Empire are exploring for fracked gas. Nurrdalinji made a submission to the strategy in November 2023, noting concerns about inadequate consultation and risks to country, water and sacred sites.

Chair of Nurrdalinji, Djingili Elder Samuel Sandy, who lives in Katherine and was formerly a resident of Elliott said,

“We don’t need new gas which involves drilling into our land in the Northern Territory and damaging our country, culture and water.

“We want new, renewable energy. The answer is not gas but solar, which can power our communities from the sun. This is where we want governments to concentrate. That way, we can have a better future together.

“Why are we letting all these foreign companies come here and dig and look for fossil fuels? They just want to stuff their pockets with cash while our communities will be left with nothing.

“This new method of mining, fracking, is very highly dangerous. If gas mining poisons water we will all suffer. Water is life, and it's so significant—to land, culture, songlines and our grandchildren.

“If our country is fracked, where are we going to take our grandchildren out on country to teach them, the way my grandfather taught me? How will they be taught the songlines, our way of life?

“It’s already getting hotter here, making it harder to live on country. Already our people can't keep their homes cool. Digging and burning more gas will make this worse.”

Photos: Nurrdalinji Directors and members inspecting Tamboran’s Maverick 1 Well Pad site where pollution occurred here. Nurrdalinji Chair Samuel Janama Sandy here.


The Nurrdalinji Native Title Aboriginal Corporation includes native title holders from the Amungee Mungee, Beetaloo, Hayfield, Kalala, Newcastle Waters - Murranji, Nutwood Downs, Shenandoah, Tandyidgee, Tanumbirini, Daly Waters Township, Ucharonidge native title determinations.

The Beetaloo sub-basin is located around 500 kilometres south-east of Darwin. It embraces Aboriginal land, pastoral leases (which co-exist with Native Title rights and interests), horticultural enterprises, cattle stations and remote Aboriginal communities. A number of companies are currently undertaking fracked gas drilling in the Beetaloo, with a view to expanding their projects across the region. (edited)