printable versionPrint this page

Cooperation Agreement between Chuulangun Aboriginal Corporation and The Wilderness Society

Date: 22 June 2005
Sub Category:Indigenous Partnership
Place:Cape York Peninsula
State/Country:Queensland, Australia
Subject Matter: | Cultural Heritage | Environmental Heritage | Land Management | Recognition of Native Title or Traditional Ownership
Summary Information:
The Cooperation Agreement between Chuulangun Aboriginal Corporation and The Wilderness Society (The Agreement) contains five sections as follows:

recognises the Kaanju people's traditional ownership of their homelands, Kaanju Ngachi (Kaanju Country), located around the Wenlock and Pascoe Rivers of Cape York Peninsula. The agreement recognises the significance of these homelands to the Kaanju people and the parties affirm their shared responsibility to 'preserve, protect and manage the environment for the benefit of future generations.' Chuulangun Aboriginal Corporation (CAC) is acknowledged as being 'at the forefront of the return of Kaanju to Country and the development of a Kaanju land and resource framework.'

CAC and The Wilderness Society (TWS) aim to 'work together voluntarily in support of the protection of the natural and cultural values of Kaanju Ngaachi.'

Mutual Committments
The parties agree to work cooperatively to advance several agendas including:
- the Indigenous rights of Kaanju as Traditional Owners and their right to speak for Country;
- A 'properly supported Traditional Owners governance structure for Kaanju Ngaachi, with Kaanju as primary land managers';
- A 'properly supported conservation strategy for the management of the environments of Cape York Peninsula, including Kaanju lands and waters';
- 'sharing of ecological knowledge of Kaanju Ngaachi' and 'respect for cultural and intellectual property rights'

CAC and TWA accept various responsibilities including ensuring that:
- 'free and informed consent is given by both parties in relation to any matter' covered by the agreement;
- each party pursues their rights and interests outside of the agreement in a way that is not harmful to the agreement's stated objectives;
- 'each properly represent, inform and involve the members' of the respective groups in 'decision-making, communication and cooperation to give effect the aims' of the agreement;
- the parties 'maintain openness, honesty and trust' in their relationship.

Areas of Cooperation
CAC and TWS plan to establish 'cooperative arrangements' and 'action plans' dealing with, but not limited to:
- 'Conservation of the high natural and cultural values of Kaanju Ngaachi in a manner consistent with Aboriginal Title';
- 'recognition and protection of the Wild Rivers and the World Heritage values of Kaanju Ngaachi';
- funding arrangements for the establishment and maintenance of an 'Indigenous Protected Area' on Kaanju lands;
- 'Community and ecological development compatible with the maintenance of the ecological values of Kaanju Ngaachi';
- development of 'shared ecological knowledge'
- Joint campaigns, presentations and information sharing
- Reciprocal placement of volunteers with both CAC and TWS 'in support of conservation research, management and development of Kaanju Ngaachi'.

Related Entries

  • The Wilderness Society - Signatory
  • Chuulangun Aboriginal Corporation - Signatory
  • People
  • Kaanju People

  • References

    B Smith and D Claudie (2003) Developing a land and resource management framework for Kaanju homelands, Central Cape York Peninsula


    Indigenous Protected Areas Programme (Australia) | Indigenous Partnership

    Top of page

    Was this useful? Click here to fill in the ATNS survey