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5 Dec 2022

Samantha Dick & Jacqueline Breen, ABC News (Australia)

Australia: Court dismisses Santos' appeal over allegations of inadequate consultation of Tiwi Islanders over impacts of Barossa gas project

"What the Santos Federal Court loss means for the Barossa gas project off the Tiwi Islands, and future projects like it", 4 Dec 2022

Gas company Santos lost a landmark legal battle this week, with its appeal over the finding against its $4.7 billion Barossa gas project north of the Tiwi Islands slapped down by the Federal Court.

The ruling is a major victory for traditional owners, who argued they weren't consulted about the company's plans to drill for gas and pipe it through Tiwi sea country to Darwin for export.

But as celebrations erupted on the islands north of Darwin on Friday, Santos confirmed it intends to push ahead with the project.

So what does the decision mean and what happens next? ...

Following the release of the judgement on Friday, a company spokesperson said Santos hopes to win fresh approvals for its revised environment plan and carry on with the project as planned. 

"Santos has always sought to meet its consultation responsibilities and is continuing the process of revising the drilling environment plan to address the matters contained in the judgement," the spokesperson said ...

"First gas from the Barossa Gas Project remains on track to be delivered in the first half of 2025," the spokesperson said ...

Munupi woman Antonia Burke said the group is happy about the court's decision but will continue to fight the project.

For now, the drill rig Santos hired for the Barossa project remains idle off the coast of Darwin.

"We will keep fighting this until they pack up and go," Ms Burke said.

"Munupi people don't want any fossil fuel activities off the coast line of the Tiwi islands.