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Environment, Political

TALENT ALERT: Senate committee to hear concerns about Middle Arm gas hub proposal

Environment Centre NT 2 mins read

Monday April 8

This week, the Senate Inquiry into the Middle Arm Industrial Precinct will interrogate a proposal to build a gas hub on Darwin Harbour. It will hear from witnesses who are concerned about the health, climate, environment, and cultural heritage impacts in Greater Darwin. The Inquiry was called in September 2023 as a result of controversy over the project and will be heard in Darwin on April 10-11.

The following spokespeople are available for comment this week.

Dr Kirsty Howey, Executive Director of Environment Centre NT, can speak about the potential environmental impacts, local opposition to the project, integrity concerns regarding public subsidy, and regulatory and approvals processes.

Chris Streeter, tourism operator, owns Streeter Cruises which operates out of Darwin Harbour and can speak about his concern about the impacts of Middle Arm on the harbour and the tourism industry, as well as his observations of the negative impacts of the Inpex gas development on the harbour and the economy.

Dr Louise Woodward, NT paediatrician, can speak about the potential health impacts of the Middle Arm development proposal:

“The Middle Arm Development proposed for Darwin contains nominated industries which pose threats to human health, some of which may be located less than 3km from Palmerston. Liquid Natural Gas (LNG) processing and petrochemical manufacturing pose the greatest risks to the people of Greater Darwin, and we are concerned that the health impacts are not being adequately considered by either the NT government or the Australian government.“

Oliver Johns, Darwin high school teacher, has worked in NT schools for more than six years:

"Teachers across the Territory are steadfast in their rejection of the NT government’s plan to build the Middle Arm gas hub. Kids are particularly vulnerable to the cancer, asthma and other illnesses that gas hubs like this cause, so we have a duty of care to speak out on their behalf. Sick kids can’t learn, and sick communities can’t achieve educational outcomes.”

Al Cabry, member of Australian Youth Climate Coalition (AYCC) Darwin:

“I grew up five minutes from Middle Arm and was devastated to learn about plans to industrialise an area that I know and love. This project will enable massive gas expansion in the Territory, which will worsen the impacts of the climate crisis. Darwin deserves better, the government needs to invest in the future for young people, not a fossil fuel subsidy.”

Billee McGinley, Parents for Climate Darwin member, is a long-term resident working in natural resource management:

“In the NT we face the reality where our homes are predicted to be unlivable within the lifetime of our children. It is absolutely reckless to be approving and subsiding new fossil fuel projects in 2024 given the stark and unequivocal scientific evidence before us. Seven NT parents travelled to Canberra last year to ask for this inquiry and we are glad it is happening, but the critical question is: what next? Will the federal Labor government redirect the $1.5 billion, currently committed to Middle Arm, to NT projects and sectors that are genuinely sustainable and that won’t harm our health?”

Dom Serov, member of Australian Youth Climate Coalition (AYCC) Darwin:

"It’s scary looking at the data about the health and climate impacts of the proposed development at Middle Arm. As young people living in Darwin, we don't want public money to be handed out to gas projects. We want a safe and sustainable future."

For interviews or more information, contact Emily Watkins on 0420 622 408 or

Middle Arm Senate Inquiry background for media available here.

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