In the Media

December 2014 Bringing back an endangered language Yawuru on GWN7

November 2014 BBC TV story on the hand back of Roebuck Plains Station BBC TV

November 23, 2014 Extinct spectacled hare wallaby spotted in Western Australlia, The Guardian Australia

November 23, 2014 Scientists thrilled spectacled hare wallaby feared extinct rediscovered alive & well,  Daily Mail UK

November 21, 2014 Yawuru Country Managers have found a spectacled hare wallaby, a species feared to be locally extinct,  at Roebuck Plains, Science Network Western Australia

November 14, 2014 World Park’s Congress Protected areas key to safeguarding the global environment UNESCO Media

November 2014 Latest abundance estimate of snubfin dolphins in Roebuck Bay released Murdoch University Cetacean Research Unit

September 4th, 2014 A change and boost for kimberley cattle industry Channel 7

September 3th, 2014 Land rights battle in Broome has been won by traditional owners SBS News

September 3rd, 2014 Station deeds handed to Broome’s Traditional Owners,  ABC Kimberley

September 3rd, 2014 20 Year native title battle ends with economic triumph, The Australian Newspaper

September 3rd, 2014 Station Gives Yawuru a new start, The West Australian Newspaper

July 21, 2014, The Australian Newspaper, Link here

Indigenous group delays Buru

Andrew Burrell

BURU Energy has failed to secure the backing of a key indigenous group in Western Australia’s Kimberley region for the company’s plans to explore for shale gas using the controversial practice of hydraulic fracturing, or “fracking”.

The Yawuru Native Title Holders Aboriginal Corporation voted against Buru’s plan to frack two wells at Yulleroo, 80km east of Broome. The vote followed a submission to a WA parliamentary inquiry in which the Yawuru, led by respected elder Patrick Dodson, said it opposed fracking on its traditional lands because of fears that the practice could contaminate water supplies.

The group said on Friday that if Buru Energy still decided to proceed with fracking on its land, the explorer “must agree to meet environmental, cultural, social and economic conditions set by Yawuru”. Because Buru’s exploration permits have been granted, the Yawuru do not have the right to negotiate under the Native Title Act and the group has no legal basis to veto Buru’s activities.

But the decision is still a setback for Perth-based Buru, which has previously promised not to go ahead with fracking unless it has broad community support.

Buru spokesman Jon Ford said there was “strong support” for Buru’s plans to create jobs and boost WA’s domestic gas supply. “Buru Energy respects the Yawuru traditional owners and we will address their concerns,” he said.

“They are one of our many important stakeholders and we look forward to continuing to work with the Yawuru community long into the future.”

Last month, Buru won the support of the Yungngora native title holders at Noonkanbah, 320km east of Broome. The group said an independent expert’s report had found Buru’s fracking plan had found the project would be a “very low risk” to their country.

Buru is the most advanced of the listed companies working in the onshore Canning Basin, which has been identified as the most prospective region for unconventional gas in the world outside the US, with about 229 trillion cubic feet of gas.

Fracking involves drilling into the earth before a high-pressure mix of water, sand and chemicals is injected to free gas from rocks deep underground. But some claim there is a risk that the chemicals can leak into aquifers and pollute the groundwater.

Buru last week told the ASX it had been forced to defer the $40 million fracking program until March next year due to delays in obtaining government approvals.

The Yawuru decision came a day after a Kimberley-wide meeting of Aboriginal leaders called on the WA government for a moratorium on fracking until more information was available to help make an informed decision. Wayne Bergmann, chief executive of KRED Enterprises, which works with traditional owners to develop Aboriginal businesses, said he was concerned about a lack of information on whether fracking could be done safely.

July 21, 2014, ABC News – Yawuru vote to oppose fracking on land near Broome  

October 11, 2013, SBS & NITV – Traditional Owners clash with DOT over Broome development

View the TV segment here

September8th,  2013, Broome Advertiser – Yawuru people go live with culture and history

Graphic designer, Danica Manado has used her creative flair to create a website for the traditional owners of Broome, the Yawuru.

The site explains Yawuru history, culture and current programs. …

Broome Advertiser website story

8th September 2013, The West Australian – Yawuru calendar brightens banners

The theme and inspiration for the Horizon Power-supported Shinju Matsuri Banner Project this year is based on the Yawuru calendar.

Each of the calendar’s six seasons is marked by the abundance of certain species of fish, birds, reptiles, insects, plants, fruits and vegetables.

These cultural elements have been incorporated into each unique banner design.


June 12, 2013, The West Australian – “Healthy result for next generation”

The daughter of a prominent WA Aboriginal family is the pride of her generation, becoming the first Yawuru Karajarri doctor in Broome.

Kim Isaacs finished 12 years of hard toil on Friday when she passed the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners Fellowship exams.

The 34-year-old will work at the Broome Regional Aboriginal Medical Service, where she completed her GP training. Dr Isaacs said her family had a strong history in medicine. “I am the first western medicine doctor but my grandfather was a traditional healer,” she said.

Dr Isaacs started her medical degree at the University of WA at a time when there were few indigenous doctors nationally.

“Whether to do medical school was a hard decision to make as I had just finished my bachelor of commerce degree, I was broke and I had a job lined up,” she said.

“The poor health statistics of our mob and the small workforce of indigenous health professionals was enough to convince me I wanted to help make a difference, so I signed up.”

Dr Isaacs said she was passionate about child health.

“Our mob trust us, we work at a grassroots level and know what the health issues are facing our community,” she said.

Dr Isaacs’ mother Theresa has worked for the Derbarl Yerrigan Health Service for 35 years.


June 6, 2013, Broome Advertiser  – “Building holds Yawuru future”

Hundreds of traditional owners and Broome community members marked an historic event in Yawuru history when Nyamba Buru Yawuru officially celebrated the opening of its new offices.


May 29, 2013, ABC Kimberley – Racisim and Yawuru elders remembered at office opening


February 2013 – “Red Dirt Talking” 360 documentaries

A two part series and collaboration between the BBC and Radio National which aired late in February 2013. Patrick Dodson features in the Kimberley episode.


12 Dec 2012, ABC Kimberley – Endangered Yawuru language kept alive by Broome students


August 2012 , ANU – Statistics for Community Governance: The Yawuru


John Taylor, Bruce Doran, Maria Parriman and Eunice Yu


This paper presents a case study of an exercise in Aboriginal community governance. It sets out the background events that led the Yawuru Native Title Holders Aboriginal Corporation to secure information for its own needs as an act of self-determination and essential governance, and it presents some of the key findings from that exercise. As the Indigenous rights agenda shifts from the pursuit of restitution to the management and implementation of benefits, those with proprietary rights are finding it increasingly necessary to build internal capacity for post-native title governance and community planning, including in the area of information retrieval and application. As an incorporated land-holding group, the Yawuru people of Broome are amongst the first in Australia to move in this area of information gathering, certainly in terms of the degree of local control, participation and conceptual thinking around the logistics and rationale for such an exercise. An innovative addition has been the incorporation of survey output data into a Geographic Information System to provide for spatial analysis and a decision support mechanism for local community planning. In launching and administering the ‘Knowing our Community’ household survey in Broome, the Yawuru have set a precedent in the acquisition and application of demographic information for internal planning and community development in the post-native title determination era.