Century Mine, in the lower Gulf of Carpentaria region of far north-west Queensland, ceased zinc production in late 2015 after 16 years of operation. This makes it one of the most significant planned mine closures in Queensland, and indeed Australia, in decades. It is also an important milestone with regard to the landmark Gulf Communities Agreement (GCA) that has governed relations between the traditional owners of the region and the mine owners since 1997. This paper provides a brief account of the history of the GCA and the outcomes it has delivered. It also draws out lessons for other projects in Australia and overseas that have local-level agreements with Indigenous peoples, or will be required or expected to develop these in the future.
Brereton, D. & Everingham, J. (2016). Making and implementing agreements with indigenous communities: A case study of the Gulf Communities Agreement. Brisbane: CSRM.