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Dharumbal / Woppaburra Traditional Use Marine Resource Agreement (TUMRA)

Category: Agreement
Date: 22 June 2007
Sub Category:Traditional Use Marine Resource Agreement (TUMRA)
Place:Great Barrier Reef Marine Park
State/Country:Queensland, Australia
The agreement area extends from the Keppel Islands, approx 15 km off the coast of Yeppoon, to Rockhampton in Central Queensland. The area covers approx 561 square km of sea country.
Legal Status:

This TUMRA has been accredited by the Marine Park Authority in line with criteria in the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Regulations 1983 (Reg. 10).

Alternative Names:
  • Dharumbal / Woppaburra Traditional Use Marine Resource Agreement (TUMRA)
  • Dharumbal Traditional Use Marine Resource Agreement (TUMRA)
  • Woppaburra Traditional Use Marine Resource Agreement (TUMRA)
  • Dharumbal / Woppaburra TUMRA
  • Dharumbal TUMRA
  • Woppaburra TUMRA
  • Dharumbal / Woppaburra Traditional Use Marine Resource Agreement
  • Subject Matter:Collaboration / Partnership | Cultural Heritage | Environmental Heritage | Fishing | Marine | Recognition of Native Title or Traditional Ownership | Recognition of Traditional Rights and Interests
    URL: http://www.gbrmpa.gov.au/our-partners/traditional-owners/traditional-use-of-marine-resources-agreements
    Summary Information:

    The Dharumbal / Woppaburra Traditional Use Marine Resource Agreement (Dharumbal / Woppaburra TUMRA) was agreed under the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Act 1975 (The
    Act) between the Dharumbal Aboriginal Corporation, the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority (GBRMPA), the Queensland Environmental Protection Agency and the Australian and Queensland Government. The Dharumbal Aboriginal Corporation and the Dharumbal-Noolar Murree Aboriginal Corporation for Land and Culture act as agents for the Woppaburra people in negotiations regarding native title, cultural heritage, land and sea interests.

    A TUMRA is 'an agreement, developed in accordance with the regulations, by a traditional owner group, for the traditional use of marine resources in a site or area of the Marine Park' (Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Zoning Plan 2003).

    The Dharumbal / Woppaburra TUMRA was signed in 2007 following discussions between the Woppaburra people and the GBRMPA. The objectives and terms of the TUMRA were developed by the Woppaburra people (one of five peoples comprising the Dharumbal Nation), and accredited by the GBRMPA and Queensland Government's Environment Protection Authority. The Woppaburra TUMRA meeting on 22 June 2007 allowed Traditional owners, elders, descents, guests archaeologists and education centre staff to present to the GBRMPA and Queensland Park and Wildlife Service on their interests in forming a management partnership.

    The Dharumbal / Woppaburra TUMRA promotes the sustainability of marine animals and resources within the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park, while protecting and preserving sacred objects and collections in the Keppel Islands that are valued in their culture and customs. Objects include shell necklets, ornaments, fishing implements, tools, nets and baskets (We are Woppaburra, Maintaining Connections). The aim of the agreement is to protect the natural qualities of the Great Barrier Reef while providing for reasonable use of the reef region, and minimising regulation of, and interference in, human activities. The aim of the agreement is achieved by Traditional Owners and marine management agencies working together in sea country partnerships on a wide range of issues.

    The Dharumbal / Woppaburra TUMRA has a 'Steering Committee' of Traditional Owners to manage the agreement, including traditional activities involving protected species.

    Detailed Information:

    TUMRA Background:

    For traditional owners, the spiritual relationship with country has been likened to that with a member of the family: to be loved, nurtured, cared for and above all, respected (Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority 2007, 3).

    Traditional Use Marine Resource Agreements (TUMRAs) are a new type of legal instrument that describes how Traditional Owner groups wish to manage the traditional use of marine resources (Department of Environment and Heritage, 2004, 3).

    The Indigenous Land and Sea Country Partnerships Program is a $20 million investment in Traditional Owner management of the Great Barrier Reef. The program was created to provide resources and funds for the development and implementation of Traditional Use Marine Resource Agreements, such as the Dharumbal / Woppaburra TUMRA. The Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Zoning Plan 2003 established a new framework where GBRMPA and traditional owners segregate different areas or 'zones' of sea country so they can be utilised for specific purposes. The new framework compliments the establishment of various community-based measures developed by Traditional Owner Groups to protect marine life, while ensuring entitlements enshrined in the Native Title Act 1993 are recognised. The new framework replaces old Zoning Plans and gives more power to traditional owners in managing the reef's resources (Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority 2007, 5).

    As part of the new framework, only 'traditional owners' can undertake traditional use of marine resources. The Act includes various provisions that impose penalties for individuals who breach zones and management procedures.

    Details of the Agreement:

    The Woppaburra people and GBRMPA are working together to integrate modern marine management and traditional knowledge to ensure sustainability of the environment, while preserving traditional customs and connection to sea country.

    The Dharumbal / Woppaburra TUMRA ensures Woppaburra Traditional Owners form a 'Steering Committee', responsible for prohibiting and authorising certain traditional activities in the Woppaburra Section of the Great Barrier Reef. The Steering Committee works with Traditional Owners, rangers and Government, to cooperatively minimise illegal hunting activities in the region.

    The TUMRA, specifically (Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority, 2007, 41):

    • identifies who the Traditional owners are for the Dharumbal TUMRA (Woppaburra Section)
    • imposes a limit on Traditional Owners regarding the traditional activity of turtle harvesting, dugong harvesting
    • prohibits hunting by other Indigenous people within the Dharumbal TUMRA area, who are not family to the Woppaburra people

    The agreement is to be integrated with the existing zoning and management plans of the GBRMPA so that (Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority, RAP Information Sheet, 2002, 1):

    • Traditional Owners will continue to have access to all zones in the Marine Park according to Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander custom or tradition, for activities not involving the take of animals, plants or marine products
    • Traditional fishing and collecting can be conducted 'as of right' (without a permit) in those zones which generally allow for fishing and collecting
    • Traditional hunting of dugong and turtle, and other traditional use that would not be an 'as of right' activity, will be managed through TUMRAs
    • Agreements and partnerships will be developed between the Traditional Owners groups and the GBRMPA for cooperatively managing a wide range of 'sea country' issues.
    • Guidelines for establishing partnerships, programs and agreements (including the contents of such agreements) will be established in consultation with Traditional Owner groups, representative bodies and the Environment Protection Agency

    The Dharumbal / Woppaburra TUMRA proposes a new system where proportionality balances sustainable levels of harvesting with species conservation.

    The cooperative arrangements provided for by the agreement complement several other measures providing for the recognition of Indigenous rights and cooperative management including the Native Title Act 1993 (Cth). Measures specific to the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park include:

    • statutory provisions for the appointment of at least one representative of Traditional Owners on the Board of the GBRMPA
    • participation on regional and local advisory committees, and
    • the establishment of an Indigenous Partnerships Liaison Unit within the Authority.

    For further information on these arrangements follow the link to the Great Barrier Reef Management Authority below.

    The agreement area is divided into eight zones, each designed to obtain and preserve a different goal: (a) the General Use Zone; (b) the Habitat Protection Zone; (c) the Conservation Park Zone; (d) the Buffer Zone; (e) the Scientific Research Zone; (f) the Marine National Park Zone; (g) the Preservation Zone; (h) the Commonwealth Islands Zone.


    Related Entries

    Organisation
  • Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority - Signatory
  • Environmental Protection Agency (Queensland) - Signatory
  • Darumbal People Aboriginal Corporation RNTBC - Signatory
  • Darumbal-Noolar Murree Aboriginal Corporation for Land and Culture
  • Darumbal Enterprises Pty Ltd
  • State of Queensland - Signatory
  • Commonwealth of Australia - Signatory
  • Legislation
  • Native Title Act 1993 (Cth)
  • Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Act 1975 (Cth)
  • Native Title Amendment Act 1998 (Cth)
  • Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Regulations 1983 (Cth)
  • People
  • Darumbal People
  • Woppaburra Family Group

  • References

    Media Release
    Department of the Environment and Heritage Working Together to Improve Indigenous Land Management
    Report
    Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority (2007) A Reef Wide Framework for Managing Traditional Use of Marine Resources in the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park
    Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority (2003) Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Zoning Plan 2003
    Resource
    United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), World Heritage Committee (1972) Convention Concerning the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage
    Resource Section
    Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority (2020) Traditional Use of Marine Resource Agreement Summary

    Glossary

    Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander (Australia) | Aboriginal Corporation (Australia) | Framework Agreement | Local Government | Traditional Use Marine Resource Agreements | Indigenous Partnership | Indigenous Protected Area (Australia)

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