Nurrdalinji Aboriginal Corporation, which represents Traditional Owners from across the Beetaloo Basin, has responded to news that fracking company Tamboran Resources is in the running for a role in the Middle Arm gas export hub by calling on the Albanese government to withdraw its $1.5 billion funding allocation and divert it to improving energy security, housing, health and education in Aboriginal communities (“NT to anoint fracking, hydrogen, battery mineral hopefuls”, AFR, 8 June 2023).
Jingili elder and Deputy Chair of Nurrdalinji Aboriginal Corporation, Samuel Janama Sandy, said, “The Albanese government should listen to Traditional Owners who want to protect country and don’t want fracking in the Beetaloo Basin. Public money shouldn't be used to fill the pockets of big gas companies like Tamboran Resources who do not care about our country, water and cultural heritage.
“Our communities need support to install solar, better housing, health and education services so they can grow stronger and the Federal government's $1.5B for Middle Arm would go a long way to help.
“Tamboran Resources can’t be trusted. They have already been fined for polluting on Tanumbirini cattle station and are under investigation for other incidents. They don’t deserve this kind of leg up from the Federal government.”
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 region, with most of the NT covered by exploration permits.