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Gorgon Project on Barrow Island

             Give an overview of the issue as to be investigated by you.
             Barrow Island has a unique place in Western Australia's history, geography and social development. Barrow Island is located in the Carnarvon Basin, 55kms off the North West coast of Western Australia; it is one of the last remainders of what Australia was like prior to European invasion. On the 18th February 1910 it was proclaimed a "permanent reserve class A for the protection of flora and fauna" under the Permanent Reserves Act 1899. Barrow Island has internationally significant biodiversity values, with an exceptional range of flora and fauna, marine ecosystems and karst systems; it is one of the largest land masses in the world that has no introduced animals. Barrow Island is best known for its abundant mammals, rich bird and reptile fauna, unique and valuable assemblage of subterranean animals, and valuable vegetation communities. It is considered by many to be a priceless jewel in our natural heritage. The fragility of the habitat on Barrow Island is preserved only by its isolation which will indisputably come to an end if the current cautious low-key WAPET operations are scaled up to a full scale concentration camp, environmentalists believe this will be the case if the Gorgon Venture goes ahead.
             ChervonTexaco, ExxonMobil and Shell (the Gorgon Partners) are currently proposing to put over $6 billion worth of industrial gas processing plant and equipment on Barrow Island. This concept involves delivering gas via a corrosion resistant pipeline to a processing unit on Barrow Island, where the gas can be conditioned and delivered to customers. The Gorgon Gas field is the largest field in the certified gas reserves of 12.9Tcf, and one of the largest ever discovered in Australia, this remote field lacks any oil by-products, and is relatively high in carbon dioxide; it is also the closest field to land and the most ready for the market.

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