McGowan must block bid for new FIFO camp in Karratha
The McGowan Government must reject Woodside’s proposal to build a new 700-bed fly-in, fly-out camp in Karratha after the local council unanimously opposed the bid.
The City of Karratha sent a strong message to the State Government this week as councillors resolved to write to the Premier and various Labor ministers objecting to construction of the new Bay Village FIFO camp.
Nationals Leader Mia Davies said FIFO donga camps were no longer an acceptable outcome in strong Pilbara communities.
“The people of Karratha have many reasons to be proud of their City; it is a remarkable place with facilities and a lifestyle rivalling anywhere in Australia,” Ms Davies said. “The community received unprecedented investment from Royalties for Regions during the previous term of government because The Nationals believed in the potential of the Pilbara.
“The people of Karratha could not be clearer: FIFO donga camps do not belong in major regional centres. The only thing not clear is the position of local MP Kevin Michel and this Labor Government.”
Ms Davies said Woodside had apparently ignored concerns posed by the City of Karratha in the company’s business case for the FIFO camp.
“The business plan indicates that the City is supportive of Woodside’s plans,” Ms Davies said. “This is totally incorrect and I urge Woodside and the McGowan Government to do the right thing by the community.”
Nationals Member for Mining and Pastoral Jacqui Boydell said Woodside had yet to provide evidence that a 700-bed camp was required for its local projects.
“There are currently more than 4300 FIFO beds in Karratha, along with 480 hotel rooms which are at 60 per cent occupancy most nights,” Ms Boydell said. “Woodside also has 120 houses sitting vacant in town.
“Assessments undertaken by the City of Karratha show there is sufficient accommodation available to meet both Woodside’s base load and shutdown needs.
“This is simply to do with cost and Woodside wanting to reduce their costs at the expense of the Karratha community.”
Ms Boydell said Mr Michel’s silence on the camp had been deafening.
“Where is the local MP? This is a major community issue and we are yet to hear a peep out of Kevin Michel. He’s got the chance to stand up for his community but is refusing.”
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