Esperance Tjaltjraak Native Title Aboriginal Corporation RNTBC
The Esperance Tjaltjraak Native Title Aboriginal Corporation RNTBC acts as an agent for the Esperance Nyungar people’s native title rights and interests over an area of land first recognised in The Esperance Nyungars determination. A consent determination was finally reached, after 18 years of legal proceedings and negotiations on 14 March 2014.
Central to the agreement was the requirement that the Esperance Nyungar people enter into Indigenous Land Use Agreements (ILUAs) with both the Western Australian Government and the mining company FQM (Ravensthorpe Nickel Operations). The WA Government additionally demanded that the claimants agree to forfeit native title over the northern part of the determination area before it would consent to a determination.
The ILUA with FQM concerned two parcels of land over which the WA Government had granted FQM mining leases after the Esperance Nyungar people’s application had been registered. In Bullen v State of Western Australia, Justice Sinopis had declared that because of this, the granting of the leases were not subject to good faith negotiations, as is required under Section 31 of the Native Title Act.
‘Tjaltjraak’ in the corporation’s name comes from the Nyungar term for a culturally significant species of eucalypt (also known as tallarack), the geographic distribution of which roughly aligns with the boundaries of Esperance Nyungar country.