National Strategy for Ecologically Sustainable Development

Prepared by the Ecologically Sustainable Development Steering Committee
Endorsed by the Council of Australian Governments
December, 1992
ISBN 0 644 27253 8

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples
Part 3 Intersectoral Issues - Chapter 22


To ensure full participation by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples in community progress towards ESD.

Strategic Approach

Actions will focus on incorporating Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander (ATSI) land, heritage, economic and cultural development and employment concerns in resource allocation decisions, and strengthening consultative arrangements and the involvement of ATSI people in relevant decision making processes related to ESD.

Objective 22.1

  • to ensure effective mechanisms are put in place to represent ATSI land, heritage, economic and cultural development concerns in resource allocation processes

Governments will:

  • have regard to the traditional dependence by ATSI people on the management of renewable resources and ecosystems
  • encourage greater recognition of ATSI peoples' values, traditional knowledge and resource management practices relevant to ESD
  • continue efforts to address ATSI employment concerns in natural resource based industries which impact on their communities
  • undertake further work to examine the impacts of tourism on indigenous communities, and seek to increase their involvement in this industry
  • promote better relations between mining, Aboriginal and government interests through a new committee, which has been established by the National Council for Aboriginal Reconciliation and includes representatives from each of these groups
  • ensure ATSI representation on the National Mining Roundtable being established by ANZMEC
  • consider the Commonwealth proposal to negotiate cooperatively the development of intergovernmental agreements on the assessment of Aboriginal heritage concerns related to development projects

Objective 22.2

  • to strengthen the active participation of ATSI peoples in formulation of ESD-related policies and programs

Governments will:

  • support the Council for Aboriginal Reconciliation as a forum for discussion and formulation of ATSI positions relating to ESD
  • seek to develop and strengthen national dispute-resolution arrangements in relation to settlement of land and resource-management concerns
  • examine the relative representation of ATSI people on decision-making or advisory bodies to relevant to their interests in resource allocation or ESD-related issues
  • at the Commonwealth level, ensure any ESD-related initiatives in this area are consistent with the Government's objectives for the International Year for the World's Indigenous People