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Cooper Basin Access Agreements

Date: 1 October 2001
Sub Category:Exploration Agreement (Native Title Act) | Future Act Agreement (Native Title Act) | Template Agreement
State/Country:South Australia, Australia
Subject Matter:Compensation | Cultural Heritage | Exploration | Mining and Minerals | Native Title | Recognition of Traditional Rights and Interests
Summary Information:
The initial Cooper Basin Access agreements were made between three native title claim groups (the Edward Landers Dieri, Yandruwandha/Yawarrawarrka and Wangkangurru/Yarluyandi Peoples), seven different exploration consortiums and the South Australian Government. The agreements relate to Petroleum Exploration Licences in the Cooper Basin Area and cover the exploration phase, but also provide for development of any discoveries should exploration be successful. The agreements also establish processes to protect Aboriginal heritage before and during field operations, and to provide payments for the interference with the enjoyment of the native title rights of the claimants.

The seven exploration consortiums include Australian Crude Oil Co. Inc.; Stuart Petroleum NL; Beach Petroleum NL; Strike Oil NL and Australian Gasfields Ltd.; Liberty Petroleum Corporation; Beach Petroleum NL and Magellan Petroleum (NT) Pty. Ltd.; and Tyers Investments Pty. Ltd.

Since these initial agreements of October 2001, an additional 16 licences have been granted under signed agreements.
Detailed Information:
Each application for a Petroleum Exploration Licence (PEL) requires a separate Native Title Agreement, and where the Licence covers two Claim areas, a separate agreement with each group must be made. Each agreement consists of two parts: a Deed to which the government is a party, plus an Ancillary Agreement between the Licensee, the Native Title Party, and their relevant management association. The Agreements last for the lifetime of the PEL. They are not confidential and are registered on the public register maintained under the Petroleum Act by the Petroleum group at Primary Industries and Resources South Australia.

Under the Agreements, there are three stages of payment that will be made by the Licensee to the Claimant's management Associations:
(1) Sign on: For Licences relating to the first round of Cooper Basin gazettal Block (CO98), the Claimant Groups receive a 'one off' fixed payment per Licence. In the event a Licence area straddles the boundary between two claim areas, the fixed sum is shared between the two groups on a 'pro rata' area basis. The sum is payable on the signing of each agreement and the funding is shared between the government and the Licensees.
(2) Annual Administration Fees: The Licensees will pay a fixed annual fee for each of the first five years of each Licence to contribute to each Association's costs for administering the agreement.
(3) Compensation for Disturbance to Land Due to Oil or Gas Production: Claimant Groups will be paid a percentage of well head value (as defined in the SA Petroleum Act) of production. Licensees will pay these funds to the government, which will deposit the funds with the relevant Claimant Group's Association.

In recognition of Aboriginal culture, Licensees will be responsible under the agreements for ensuring that all workers involved in field operations are instructed by a qualified archaeologist in the field observation techniques, and for promoting education of the traditions and culture of the Claimant Group to those workers. Members of the Claimant group will also be offered the opportunity to provide assistance in the preparation of the instruction material on a consultancy basis.

In addition, prior to undertaking every exploration activity, each Licence will obtain a Site Clearance from the Claimant Group to ensure the proposed work program will not interfere with, damage or destroy areas of significance to Aboriginal people.

Related Entries

  • State of South Australia - Signatory
  • Magellan Petroleum (N.T.) Pty Ltd. - Signatory
  • Australian Crude Oil Co Inc - Signatory
  • Stuart Petroleum NL - Signatory
  • Beach Petroleum Limited - Signatory
  • Strike Oil NL - Signatory
  • Australian Gasfields Ltd - Signatory
  • Liberty Petroleum Corporation - Signatory
  • Tyers Investments Pty Ltd - Signatory
  • Legislation
  • Petroleum Act 2000 (SA)
  • People
  • Edward Lander - Signatory
  • Yandruwandha / Yawarrawarrka Peoples - Signatory
  • Wangkangurru / Yarluyandi Peoples - Signatory

  • References

    Department of Primary Industries and Resources South Australia (2001) Information Sheet Regarding Native Title Agreements Pursuant to Applications for Petroleum Exploration Licences in the Cooper Basin, South Australia


    Exploration Agreement (Native Title Act 1993 (Cth)) (Australia) | Future Act Agreement (Native Title Act 1993 (Cth)) (Australia) | Template Agreement

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