Effects of heritage listing
Premier Colin Barnett was in Karratha on August 25 for the opening of Yara’s new Ammonium Nitrate Plant.
The Premier spoke about the possibility of the Burrup Peninsular/Murujuga becoming listed as a World Heritage site.
Listed places get more media attention and thus, more tourists along with extra money and employment for locals. However, the influx of visitors may do more harm than good if a site is not managed to prevent potential impacts to a site.
It may also undermine a country’s right to make decisions about its own heritage.
World Heritage listing does not affect ownership rights — these remain as prior to nomination. State and local laws still apply. World Heritage properties in Australia do not become Commonwealth property, nor do they become the property of any international body or foreign power.
The Australian Government has an international obligation to protect and conserve World Heritage properties, but there is no impediment to existing land uses unless they threaten any of the outstanding universal values of the property.
Experience shows that listing does not necessarily limit the range of activities that can be carried out on a property, either.
Nomination for World Heritage listing requires the authority to identify the indigenous people with rights and interests in the place and to invite their views.
The Minister takes those submissions into account when making a decision about listing the place.