In 2013, the Australian oil and gas company, Woodside Petroleum, and its multinational joint venture partners announced that they would not be proceeding with a $40 billion liquefied natural gas (LNG) processing facility on the coast of the Kimberley, north-western Australia. The corporations’ decision was made after a five-year campaign against the gas hub by Indigenous, community and environmental groups. The limited academic literature on this case has focused on particular sets of actors and stages of the conflict. This paper applies a broader perspective by examining the positions of a range of actors over a longer time period. It argues that i) the concept of the politics of time provides a useful lens for understanding the dynamics of the conflict ii) the state attempted to exercise control over the development using temporal strategies, but this facilitated alliances between Indigenous and non-Indigenous people and iii) the state also exercised control over corporate actors, but was ultimately unable to compel investment in an increasingly globalized market featuring new floating LNG technology (FLNG).

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Extractive Industries and Society
School of Public Policy and Administration

Mills, L. (2019). The conflict over the proposed LNG hub in Western Australia's Kimberley region and the politics of time. Extractive Industries and Society, 6(1), 67–76. doi:10.1016/j.exis.2018.08.002