THE DAMPIER ROCK ART PRECINCT
At no stage in the history of the DampierArchipelago or the Burrup Peninsula hasa proper inventory or evaluation beenundertaken of the heritage values of the area.A large number of plans and strategieshave been and are still being developedfor industrial and tourist development of the region with little understanding of the heritage values or the impacts on thescientiﬁc values of this area.The Burrup alone possibly contains a millionpetroglyphs of which possibly 10,000 havealready been destroyed.The international heritage value is undersustained threat with the Government tryingto preserve 60% of the 100% it has put atrisk.The ancient standing stones at Avebury andStonehenge are both world heritage sites, arevenerated for their antiquity and mystique,and are major tourist sites. Yet they arearound a mere 4,500 years old.The Dampier Rock Art Precinct containsthe largest collection of standing stonesin Australia and the largest concentrationof rock ‘carvings’ in the world. They are between 6,000 and 20,000 years old. As theyremain under threat, the precinct has beenplaced on the World Monument Fund’s Listof 100 Most Endangered Places in the World.The National Trust of Australia (WA) and itspartners are working to remove the DampierRock Art Precinct from the 100 MostEndangered Places List.Since May 2006 a number of public forumshave been held in Perth and Karratha,Western Australia, Canberra in the AustralianCapital Territory and Sydney, New SouthWales. The aim of these forums was toincrease public awareness about this uniqueAustralian heritage asset.The Dampier Rock Art Precinct is underimminent threat. Woodside Petroleum hassought permission through section 18 of the Aboriginal Heritage Act (WA) 1972 todestroy or relocate rock art. In the mediathey have conceded that some rock art will be destroyed as part of the Pluto gas project.The National Trust has express greatdisappointment that these developmentsare preceding while we wait for thedetermination in September of the NationalHeritage Listing.
The National Trust callsupon the political leaders toensure the heritage valuesare identiﬁed, conserved andinterpreted prior to any majordevelopment.
• Key elements of a solution are;o open and transparent communicationwith all stakeholders;o comprehensive inventory of the rockart and archaeological sites of thearea;o the development of a single holisticmanagement plan and a means tomonitor the management of the placeto the satisfaction of all stakeholders;o dedicated fund to support themanagement process;o independent committee to overseethe implementation and evaluation of the management plan.The National Trust believes that a win/win solution is possible that will genuinelyreconcile the competing interests of industrial development and the undoubtedworld heritage signiﬁcances of this placeFOR FURTHER REFERENCE:
AURANET - Welcome to the Homepageof the Australian Rock Art Research Association, Inc.
The National Trust of Australia (WA)
Heritage notices, Nominations,assessments and listings numbers:105727 and 105711
The Burrup Peninsula The Dampier Rock Art Precinct – Transcripts of forum proceedings
ICOMOS Heritage at Risk, Case Study 2:The Burrup Peninsula (Murujuga) on thenorth-west coast of the Pilbara,Western Australia
Save Dampier rock art
Burrup and Maitland Industrial Estates Agreement Implementation Deed (January 2003)
The Great Outdoors
Woodside Energy and the Burrup
Dampier Rock Art