Western Australia’s Environment Minister Bill Marmion today provided environmental approval for the Department of State Development’s proposed Browse Liquefied Natural Gas Precinct at James Price Point, north of Broome.
Woodside, as operator of the Browse Joint Venture, has welcomed the approval. As the potential foundation proponent for the Precinct, Woodside is currently progressing plans to build and operate an LNG processing facility and associated infrastructure within the Precinct.
Marmion said his decision followed three weeks’ consultation with other decision-making authorities and the ministers for Mines and Petroleum; Indigenous Affairs; Lands; and Transport.
“In reaching this agreement, I also took into account comments made by the ministers for Planning and State Development; and agencies, including the departments of Environment and Conservation, and Water; and the Shire of Broome,” he said.
The minister assured that the strictest environmental approvals process has been followed to ensure all possible issues have been addressed.
According to a press release issued by the ministry, the strengthened conditions will improve knowledge and improve protection of whales, dolphins, dugongs, turtles and sawfish. The measures will also reduce impacts on the monsoon vine thickets and also enhance protection of dinosaur tracks. Furthermore, the stricter conditions will better address the risk of pollution from oil spills and air emissions, and invasive marine species.
The final environmental decision on the Precinct will be made by the Commonwealth Environment Minister. Woodside will also need to seek further environmental approval from the State and Commonwealth to construct and operate the LNG processing facilities within the Precinct.
Woodside’s Browse LNG Development concept is to commercialise the Browse Joint Venture’s three gas and condensate fields, Brecknock, Calliance and Torosa, 425 km north of Broome off the Kimberley coast. Gas and liquids from these fields will be brought to an onshore LNG plant at the Browse LNG Precinct, near James Price Point, 60 km north of Broome.
November 19, 2012