The week that was in nuclear news – Australia
Well, as usual, quiet in Australian nuclear news. Well, quiet in all Australian news really, as media and politics focus on mud-slinging. At last, Prime Minister Julia Gillard has succumbed to the temptation to answer back, after many months of sexist mud-slinging from Tony Abbott and his supporters in shock jock radio. A pity, Gillard was doing well when she was just ignoring Australia’s infantile yobbos, and was talking about issues and policies.
But – nuclear spin and propaganda never rest. Australia has England’s Professor Chris Llewellyn Smith out here, telling us that Three Mile Island, Chernobyl, and especially Fukushima weren’t so bad, and what Australia needs is - nuclear power. The ABC’s TV program Catalyst has a plug for “Generation IV “- new nuclear reactors – Oh so safe!. All part of the nuke industry’s desperate bid to promote its piles of lethal wastes as a lucrative asset – fuel for planned new nuclear reactors.
Australian Nuclear Free Alliance marks 15 years of anti nuclear activism, planning its 2013 movement with a meeting in Alice Springs.
Australia likely to sign up to a USA “defence trade treaty” that would effectively censor our scientific researchers.
South Australian Native Title Services (SANTS) will challenge, in Federal Court, the Petroleum and Geothermal Energy (Transitional Licences) Amendment Bill, which effectively gives petrol and gas explorers priority over Aboriginal rights. Meanwhile the South Australian government is assuring mining companies that they’ll get speedy approvals, and appeals will be scrapped.
BUT – also in South Australia, free fuel – wind and sun – are lowering electricity prices. The Essential Service Commission of South Australian (ESCOSA), which regulates retail electricity prices, has released a draft price determination that proposes an 8.1% reduction in the electricity standing offer, (that is, the default retail price that must be offered to South Australians, at a minimum). The Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO) has noted that the South Australian wholesale prices are lower than they have been since the start of the national electricity market, and that the wind “tends to depress the South Australian regional prices”.
Victoria Wind Alliance formed to counter the Baillieu government’s war on wind energy. However, there is progress now on new 1.5 megawatt solar power plant near Mildura.
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