We look forward to partnering with Indigenous peoples (traditional custodians, first nations and aboriginal people) – be they individuals or the organisations that represent them.
Indigenous peoples’ benefits
Indigenous stakeholders may be attracted to projects that provide the following benefits:
- Environmental – unlocking the environmental benefits on their land (e.g., improving biodiversity, water quality) through:
- Blue ecosystem restoration (coastal mangrove, seagrass, salt marsh, littoral forest plants).
- Teal ecosystem restoration (freshwater plants).
- Green ecosystem restoration (inland plants, e.g., savannah plants).
- Governance – effective governance and management of land access, cultural heritage management, sacred site protection, agreement making and benefit distribution.
- Economic empowerment
- Royalties (blue, teal and green carbon credit royalties).
- Investment which provides opportunities for employment, training, and procurement (BlueCarbon Institute, jointly owned by BC-S2C and Indigenous shareholders).
- Investment in Indigenous enterprise.
- Social and cultural support – community investment fund, volunteer work, support for reinforcement and promotion of Indigenous culture and building Indigenous cultural awareness.
- Public engagement – initiatives which advance the interests of Indigenous peoples.
- BC-S2C provides a “one-stop shop“, making it easy for Indigenous peoples to get a package of benefits.
Indigenous peoples are essential partners and stakeholders
Our Australian projects are located on or near lands traditionally owned by Indigenous peoples. We recognise and respect the rights of Indigenous peoples. We like to engage early and establish respectful, long-lasting relationships through which we seek meaningful engagement, trust and mutual social, economic and environmental benefits.
Indigenous peoples have ancient and intergenerational connections to lands and waters, which are tied to their physical, spiritual, cultural and economic wellbeing. We also understand that Indigenous peoples have seen their land, economy and culture disturbed, with social, economic and environmental consequences. We recognise our activity’s impact on Indigenous peoples. We hope that by partnering with Indigenous peoples on blue, teal and green ecosystem restoration, we positively contribute to the recognition of the rights and opportunities of Indigenous peoples.
BC-S2C recognises the traditional rights of Indigenous peoples across Australia and the Indo-Pacific. In an Australian context, we acknowledge the Traditional Owners of the country and recognise their continuing connection to land, waters and culture. We pay our respects to their Elders, past, present and emerging.
- Our approach to engaging and supporting Indigenous peoples is articulated in our:
- Indigenous Peoples Policy.
- Reflect Reconciliation Action Plan (1 July 2022 – 30 June 2023).
- Community Relations Policy (BC-OC).
- Land Access Agreement and Carbon Project Development Agreement.
BC-S2C engagement and agreement-making
We acknowledge that “Free Prior and Informed Consent” (FPIC) is relevant to both the process and the outcome. All BC-S2C’s agreement-making processes must be built on the principles of FPIC, including good faith negotiation, with the focus on reaching an agreement on the basis for which a project (or changes to existing projects) may proceed, such as our commercial Agreements with Indigenous peoples.
- As a first step, we respectfully seek FPIC from Indigenous peoples for land access to research the country to find out if there is an opportunity for a successful carbon farming project.
- We seek consent through written agreements from Indigenous peoples to access the potential carbon project sites.
- We will then conduct research in country to see if there is the opportunity for a successful carbon farming project.
- If there is a potential for a project, then in good faith, we negotiate with the Indigenous peoples a detailed commercial agreement.
- The agreement lays out what work will be done and the benefits to the local community, including details on issues linked to:
- Social and cultural.
- Public engagement.
BC-S2C regional indigenous policies and plans – Australia and Indo-Pacific
Our Indigenous Peoples Policy will be reviewed regularly, and each region (Australia and Indo-Pacific) will maintain its own “Indigenous Peoples Plan” and with regular reporting comment on progress. Each Plan will focus on the local and regional context, operational footprint and relevant Indigenous stakeholders.
Reflect Reconciliation Action Plan (1 July 2022 – 30 June 2023) (RAP)
- In Australia, we see our RAP as a platform for improved economic, environmental, social and cultural co-benefits that can assist current and future Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and communities within the areas we intend to operate.
- We will undertake to build relationships and promote opportunities with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and encourage cultural awareness and respect amongst our employees.
- In line with guidelines published by Reconciliation Australia, BC-S2C recognises its future RAP will progress through phases to “innovate”, “stretch”, and “elevate”.
BC-S2C cultural awareness training
Cultural awareness training for BC-S2C’s employees and contractors will be implemented at our project sites that operate on or near Indigenous lands. BlueCarbon OnCountry, jointly owned by BC-S2C and Indigenous shareholders, will be responsible for modules and training. The cultural awareness training and induction will be managed by the BlueCarbon Institute’s (BC-I) Training Facility (BC-TA) and led by appropriately qualified Indigenous peoples. We aim to facilitate an understanding of Indigenous rights and the protection of Indigenous cultural heritage and sacred sites across the BC-S2C group.
BC-S2C’s Indigenous Peoples Policy underpins our approach to cultural heritage.
We engage early with Indigenous peoples to understand their environmental, social and cultural development priorities, issues and opportunities.
We seek to ensure Indigenous peoples benefit from our presence over the long term.
Even though our work on-country is environmental restoration focused and has mostly a positive impact, we recognise our activities may unintentionally disturb cultural heritage. We seek to avoid or minimise impacts on cultural heritage through planning and ongoing consultation with Indigenous communities.
Through early engagement during the planning phase of projects, our process’s objective is to provide opportunities for Indigenous stakeholders to identify sites and objects that are culturally or traditionally significant and to be consulted and engaged about their protection and management decisions.
Cultural awareness training
Cultural awareness training for BC-S2C’s employees and contractors will be implemented at our project sites that operate on or near Indigenous lands.
BlueCarbon OnCountry, jointly owned by BC-S2C and Indigenous shareholders, will be responsible for modules and training.
The cultural awareness training and induction will be managed from the BlueCarbon Institute’s Training and Accommodation Facility and led by appropriately qualified Indigenous peoples.
We aim to facilitate an understanding of Indigenous rights and protection of Indigenous cultural heritage and sacred sites across the BC-S2C group.
Resources available to you – BlueCarbon Institute
BC-S2C is in the process of developing the BlueCarbon Institute (BC-I). BlueCarbon OnCountry (BC-OC) will be the primary provider of operation and maintenance (O&M) services at the BC-I. BC-OC is jointly owned by BC-S2C and Indigenous shareholders. BC-I will be one of largest facilities of its type in Australia, with practical products and services geared towards remote project sites and to maximise local community and Indigenous benefits and opportunities. On joint projects, the BC-I will provide our partners with the best research, trained teams, equipment and plants required for restoration projects. With a commercial agreement in place, the BC-I could provide many benefits. Click here for more details »
BC-S2C is in the process of developing the BlueCarbon Institute (BC-I). BlueCarbon OnCountry (BC-OC) will be the primary provider of operation and maintenance (O&M) services at the BC-I. BC-S2C and Indigenous shareholders jointly own BC-OC. BC-I will be one of the most extensive facilities in Australia, with practical products and services geared toward remote project sites and to maximise local community and Indigenous benefits and opportunities.
On joint projects, the BC-I will provide our partners with the best research, trained teams, equipment and plants required for restoration projects.
For more information on what we do, please click here »